Acting in Faith

In the spring of 2015 I was listening to the October General Conference talks again as I worked in the kitchen. As I listened to The Lord Has a Plan For Us! by Elder Carlos A. Godoy he related his story of how he followed the Lord’s plan for him. As a friend was concluding a visit with him his friend asked, ““if you continue to live as you are living, will the blessings promised in your patriarchal blessing be fulfilled?”
Elder Godoy continued, “After his visit, I turned my attention to my patriarchal blessing, wondering, “If we continue to live as we are living, will the promised blessings be fulfilled?” After some pondering, I had the feeling that some changes were necessary, particularly in relation to my education and profession.”
I have held nearly every music calling I am capable of in the church. I have been the primary chorister, relief society chorister, ward music chair, ward choir director, and nursery music leader. I am now the stake music chair. Surely serving in these positions is using my gift and talent, isn’t it?
At that moment I knew that I was not fulfilling my patriarchal blessing to its fullest. I could do more to fulfill the promises made in that blessing. Because of the sacred nature of patriarchal blessings I won’t share the details, but will paraphrase some of what it says. It says that I have been given the gift and talents of music and that I will be able to use them as I go about teaching and instructing my fellowmen. Haven’t I been doing just that?
Elder Godoy went on saying, “It was not a decision between what was right and wrong but between what was good and what was better, as Elder Dallin H. Oaks taught us when he said: “As we consider various choices, we should remember that it is not enough that something is good. Other choices are better, and still others are best” (“Good, Better, Best,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2007, 104–5).
If there are better/best choices in relation to my musical abilities, they require education, going back to school. Now, if you asked me in October of 2014 if I had any plans to go back to school I would have firmly stated, “No. I have no desire to take another math test, or memorize a science term, or write another English paper.” I was happy to go along my merry way serving others and making keychains for the choir fundraiser, and crafting cute wall hangings out of pallets in my garage, but the Spirit moved on me that day in a way that made it clear that if I continued in this way I would not, could not fully feel the blessings of my patriarchal blessing, and as a result I could not serve those whom the Father needed me to serve.
The Lord couldn’t have been more clear, and I couldn’t have been more scared! It took me several days to even tell Ryan that I had had this prompting. Me, back in school? I didn’t want to solve math problems. I grew up believing that because I was slower than most in my class in solving math problems that I couldn’t do math. My math teachers didn’t know how to teach me math, or maybe they didn’t want to take the time to explain it in a way I would understand. I didn’t know how to find help with what I was struggling with. I would bring my math home and my parents couldn’t help me. I had done well enough to fill the requirements to graduate and so I didn’t try for anything more. I had definitely built up mental walls in my belief that I simply couldn’t do math. One thing was clear, if the Lord wanted me to go back to school I was going to have to take math.
Taking college level math scared me. Writing college level English papers scared me. I had heard the stories of college professors who lectured and didn’t explain. I had heard that some professors lectured and the tests were not on things in the lecture, but on what was in the text book. Quickly I realized my fears were what has held me back all these years, and if I was going to be obedient to the prompting I had received I would have to find a way to knock down the walls of fear that Satan had so carefully helped me build.
I started praying for ways to find a program that cared about helping students ease back into schooling. It was one thing to go straight from high school straight into college, but it was quite another to go back to college when you haven’t written a paper or taken a math quiz for about 20 years. I didn’t set the goal I would be in school by the fall, just that I would look for ways to fulfill the task the Lord had set before me.
In the summer of 2015 I was visiting with a friend who was also thinking of going back to school, and she was just as afraid as I was. I asked her if she had heard of Pathways through BYU-I. She hadn’t so I explained it to her. After we both researched it a little more we decided this was something we could do together. It felt right. Over the course of a couple of weeks we decided to enroll together.
The Lord was starting to clear the way!
I was still scared, but I remembered all the times we have heard scriptures and talks in church about how if we have faith and do what he asks of us He will answer our prayers. All my life in church I have heard that the Holy Ghost will testify of the truthfulness of the gospel to us.
In Moroni 10:4-6 we read:
4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.
5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.
6 And whatsoever thing is good is just and true; wherefore, nothing that is good denieth the Christ, but acknowledgeth that he is.
In my study of Heavenly Father and the Savior I have learned that Christ had a perfect knowledge of math, science, English and so on. He had to know math and science to create ‘worlds without number,” and English to be able to read the holy writings and teach so well that others could know what he meant us to learn from his words. Try this phrase out, “Math is divine.” It comes from Father. If math is divine, is it truth?
Let’s read Moroni 10:4-6 again with math in mind!
4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.
5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.
6 And whatsoever thing is good is just and true; wherefore, nothing that is good denieth the Christ, but acknowledgeth that he is.
Whoa! If math is truth, and the Holy Ghost’s mission is to testify of ALL TRUTHS the Lord can help us understand math through the power of the Holy Ghost.
Is this a stretch? Am I twisting these scriptures to fit my circumstance? I truly don’t think so. I think it applies to every aspect of life. Raising children? They don’t come with manuals. How do we know what will work best for each child? Have you ever been called to serve in a calling you knew nothing about? Have you felt the need to make a career change? Move? Overcome a bad habit or an addiction? Create a new good habit?
If the Lord is going to ask us to do things that are hard for us, how are we supposed to be able to do it? In Alma 37:6 we read; “Now ye may suppose that this is foolishness in me; but behold I say unto you, that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass; and small means in many instances doth confound the wise.”
What are the “small and simple things” that we must do to be worthy to receive the answers we need to do the things the Lord has asked of us? They are truly small and simple. Daily prayer, scripture study, listening to and acting upon promptings from the Holy Ghost, service, doing our family history, attending the temple, and partaking of the sacrament each week to enable to power of the atonement to work in our lives.
Do not discount the power of these small and simple things. In 2 Kings 5 we read of a man named Naaman who had leprosy. He sent his servant with money to the prophet Elijah to ask him to heal him. Elijah tells the servant to have his master wash in the river Jordan seven times and he shall be healed. Naaman was angry, for he expected the prophet to come out to him and call on the Lord and strike his hand over the place and heal him. In his anger he left, but his servant approached him and asked, If the prophet has asked you to do some great thing, wouldn’t you have done it? Naaman recognized the servant was right and went and bathed in the river and was healed.
Will the Lord always give US the answer directly? There was a man who was stranded in the sea, his boat was sinking, and he prayed to the Lord that he would save him. Several boats came by asking if they could help him. Each time the man said, “No thank you. The Lord will save me.” Eventually the man drowned because he could not accept that the Lord would send someone else to rescue him. We cannot know all the answers and all the solutions. We must ask the people who DO have the answers to help us. Car mechanics can help us fix our car, doctors can heal broken bones and infections, tutors can help us learn math or science or write a paper, therapists (yes, I just included marriage and family therapy and addiction recovery here) can teach us the tools we need to overcome mental blocks and illness, skilled laborers can build us a home or a roadway, pilots can fly us to missions or to visit family and many others who have the knowledge to help us accomplish the things the Lord asks us to do. If we have faith that the Lord can help us do hard things we must do the small and simple things and look for the help he has provided us on this earth.

3 Nephi 27:29
29 Therefore, ask, and ye shall receive; knock, and it shall be opened unto you; for he that asketh, receiveth; and unto him that knocketh, it shall be opened.

I know that the Lord asks us to do hard things because he wants us to grow and become more like him. I know he will provide the way for us to do these hard things. I know we are capable of doing whatever he requires of us. I know that the Holy Ghost will testify the truthfulness of all things to us when we act in faith, believing the Lord will answer our prayers. I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

November 29 Menu

Crock Pot Beef Broccoli
1 pound boneless beef chuck roast, sliced into thin strips
1 cup beef consumme
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon sesame oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons sauce from the crock pot after being cooked
Fresh broccoli florets (as many as desired)
Hot cooked rice

1. Place beef in a crock pot.
2. In a small bowl, combine consomme, soy sauce, brown sugar, oil, and garlic. Pour over beef. Cook on low for 6-8 hours.
3. In a cup, stir cornstarch and sauce form the crock pot until smooth. Add to crock pot. Stir well to combine.
4. Add broccoli to the crock pot. Stir to combine.
5. Cover and cook an additional 30 minutes on high (the sauce has to boil for it to thicken).
6. Serve over hot cooked rice.

EASY Crockpot Chicken and Stuffing

• 4 thawed chicken breasts
• 6oz. package of Stove Top stuffing mix
• 1/2 cup sour cream
• 1 can of cream of chicken soup

Chicken goes on bottom. Sprinkle dry stuffing mix on chicken. Mix soup and sour cream together and spread on top of stuffing. Could add shredded cheese if you like it. Also could add a can of your favorite canned veggies.

If chicken is frozen cook on low for 6 hours. If thawed cook on low for 4.

Double Crunch Honey Garlic Chicken

Pre breaded Chicken breasts
Honey Garlic Sauce

In a medium saucepan add

2 tbsp olive oil
3 – 4 cloves minced garlic

Cook over medium heat to soften the garlic but do not let it brown. Add:

1 cup honey
¼ cup soya sauce (low sodium soya sauce is best)
1 tsp ground black pepper
Served with rice.

For a more in-depth recipe click here:

Ranch Chicken Strips

8 boneless skinless chicken breasts (sliced into strips)
1 cup corn flakes (crushed)
¾ cup grated parmesan cheese
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 (1 ounce) package hidden valley dry ranch dressing mix
1 cup milk
1 egg
Cooking Instructions
Step 1: Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 13×9 inch baking dish. In a shallow dish combine crushed corn flakes, parmesan cheese, garlic powder, black pepper, and dry ranch dressing mix. In a small bowl beat together eggs and milk.
Step 2: Dip each chicken strip into the egg/milk mixture and then roll in the crushed corn flakes/ranch dressing mixture. Repeat until all chicken strips are well coated.
Step 3: Place onto a greased baking sheet and bake uncovered for 30 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through (the internal temperature has reached 165 degrees). You can also deep fry these. If deep frying the time will be less.
(Makes 6 Servings)

Crock Pot Enchilada Soup
3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
one large can of enchilada sauce (my favorite is the green sauce)
1 can of beans (opt)
Place in crockpot. If starting in the morning, cook on low, if starting at lunch cook on high.

An hour before dinner pull out the cooked chicken and put into mixer bowel. Add about 2 cups of juice form crock pot. Using wire whisk shred your chicken on low. (It takes like 20 seconds!) Return to pot. Using pizza cutter or sharp knife cut up tortillas into bit sized squares. Put into crock pot and stir really well.

Just before serving, stir in shredded cheese.
Serve in bowls with a dallop of sour cream and a sprinkle of cheese.

No link here. I’m sure it was inspired by someone… But I’ve had it in my notes since Sept 2011…

Crock Pot Chicken Cordon Bleu

1 can cream of mushroom soup mixed w/1 can milk
2 large chicken breasts cut 1/2 length wise
4 thin slices of ham, 4 slices swiss cheese

Slice chicken. Lay in crock pot flat, top w/1 slice cheese and 1 slice ham, fold each chicken breast in half and top w/the cream of mushroom soup and milk.

Cook 4-5 hours on low. Serve on top of mashed potatoes, pasta or rice.

I will double this for my family…

Buffalo Chicken Strips

Breaded Chicken
Buffalo Sauce
Bleu Cheese Dresing
Heat up Breaded chicken, cut into strips. Dip in sauce.

Serve with celery or in a wrap.

1 Bag meatballs from Costco
1 bottle bbq sauce
1 jar grape jelly

Brinner twice
What’s Brinner, you say? Why it’s breakfast for dinner!

Shopping List

1 lb beef chuck roast
16 Chicken breasts (giant bag from Costco or two smaller bags from grocery store)
1 bag breaded chicken breasts
Thin sliced ham

Canned soups/gravy:
Beef Connsume
1 Cream of chicken soup
1 cream of mushroom

Black Pepper
Dry ranch dressing mix
Garlic Powder
Soy Sauce
Corn Starch
Brown sugar
Sesame Oil
Buffalo Sauce
Blue Cheese Dressing
BBQ sauce
Grape jelly

Latin Foods:
1 Large can of enchilada sauce
1 can of beans

Swiss Cheese sliced
Sour cream
Grated Parmesan cheese


Garlic clove

StoveTop Stuffing

Crock Pot Liners

Menu/Grocery List Nov 5-19

Grocery shopping.  I hate love it!  I figured I can’t be the only one, right?  I mean, come on, there’s crafting and painting and sewing that is begging me to get creative, but the harsh truth of it all is that I have a family and they think there should be food in the fridge for breakfast and sufficient options to make for lunches and dinner to eat in the evenings.  Frankly, it overwhelms me most weeks.  In the past I’ve shopped for two weeks worth of groceries at a time.  I have decided that is what needs to happen, and I’m going to share with you my meals and shopping lists.  Here’s the one for Nov 5-19.

Nov 6-19 Meals

Teriyaki Chicken, Sweet & Tangy Meatballs

Forgotten Chicken

Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken

Slow Cooker Honey Apple Pork Loin

Slow Cooker Cream Cheese Mexi-Chicken


Chicken, Beans, New Potato Bake

4-6 raw chicken breasts, new potatoes, green beans. Arrange in greased 9×13 pan. Chicken in the middle, potatoes on one side, beans on the other. Sprinkle with packet of Italian dry dressing mix and drizzle with 1 stick butter, melted. Cover with foil, bake at 350* for 1 hour.

Chicken (or shrimp) Bake

Melt stick of butter in 9×13 pan. Layer pan with 1-2 sliced lemons. Put down thawed/fresh meat. Sprinkle with Italian dry dressing mix. Bake at 350*. Cover chicken with foil to avoid drying out. Serve with Orzo pasta.  Brown pasta before cooking in skillet with butter.  Cook as directed.  Spoon drippings from 9×13 pan over pasta when serving, top with meat.

Breakfast twice. Probably pancakes, eggs and bacon.

Have a couple of “As you like it” nights where everyone raids the fridge.

I also keep a couple boxes of Hamburger Helper and some ground turkey in the freezer so the kids can cook dinner when the hubs and I go on date night.


Onion soup mix

1 packet of ranch (or 3T of bulk mix)


2 Packets dry Italian dressing mix

1 Cream chic soup

1 crm celery soup

Frozen chic

Pork Loin 2.5-3lbs

1 bag frozen meatballs

ground beef (turkey)


Minute Rice

1 bottle Frank’s wings buffalo sauce


Grape Jelly

20oz BBQ sauce



Red Delicious apples

Large bag of carrots

4 garlic cloves

1 onion

Green beans

2 bags tortillas (medium/large)

1 can black beans

1 can rotel tomatoes

2 large cans pineapple

Spaghetti sauce

8 oz cream cheese


1 box pasta

Pancake Mix



Frozen/canned rolls

Lunch Items:










Slow cooker Liners

Gallon size freezer bags if you want to prep the freezer meals ahead of time.


I resolve to be more crafty and to follow up my craftiness with blog posts! In order to update a blog, one MUST be able to remember passwords and such!
I also resolve to link to blogs I follow! There are so many good ones out there!!

Happy Blogging!

It’s Fall!

It’s fall!

 I love Fall!

I love the cooler mornings and that I can open windows and enjoy the smells and the sounds of neighbors coming and going.  I love the excitement of the kids going back to school, and my dog’s excitement at playing with the kids at the bus stop in the morning.  I enjoy my friends’ excitement as they get ready for their hunts.  I love the changing leaves and wearing my jeans with my cute boots.

BUT with the cooler weather comes flies. Oh, I HATE flies!  Especially those little fruit flies!  Somehow their fall family reunion is always scheduled in my kitchen, but they never bother to book the venue, they just show up. Unannounced.  Uninvited. *shudder*

In the past I’ve been patient.  I put some apple cider vinegar in a mug, covered the mug with plastic wrap and poked holes in the plastic wrap with a toothpick and waited, and waited, and waited for the vinegar to lure the nasty flies into their trap where they would drown. I would giggle when I checked the mug and see them crawling on the underside of the plastic wrap because they are not smart enough to remember how they got into my trap in the first place.  “I’m smart, you’re dumb!” I would think to myself.

This year, as it cooled off, the pests returned. As soon as I noticed the unannounced, uninvited visitors I put out my trap and waited, and waited, and waited.  However, as I waited they seemed to be multiplying, instead of crawling into my trap! Maybe they had caught on to my tricks and were sending out invites to their relatives to join them because they had figured out how to avoid my trap! This wouldn’t do!

I will not let them win!  I decided to try a new trick.  I got out a second mug and put the vinegar in it.  Instead of putting the plastic wrap on the mug and poking holes in it, I decided to lay the piece of wrap on the counter next to it just to see what would happen.  So I left the mug with apple cider vinegar on the counter, the wrap next to it, and did my dishes.  All the time I was disturbing the ubiquitous flies from their resting places, but not if they were near the mug. After about 30 minutes there were at least a dozen flies on the inside of my mug!  Carefully, with out disturbing the mug, I lifted the plastic wrap, held it taught between my fists, and swiftly placed it over the top of the mug!  VICTORY!  Victory was mine!  They were trapped!  They had realized their folly! They franticly tried to find a way out, a hole or crease that I failed to rub with my finger to stick down to the rim, but I had been thorough.  I had pressed around the rim of that mug twice! There was no escape!  They had met their fate, and there were no holes for them to warn their friends through to avoid the same mistake.

By morning they had all given up and were at the bottom of the mug.  I removed the wrap, dumped out the vinegar, refilled it, and put it on the counter with the plastic wrap next to it, at the ready.  All the time thinking to myself, “I’m smart, you’re dumb!”

DIY Chalkboard

Ever since I found out there was chalkboard paint in the stores I have wanted an excuse to make one!

I finally got my chance when I was asked to teach early morning scripture study in my home for kids in my church!


So I went to the local hardware store to find supplies. I HEART hardware stores!

I came home with this:

A large square of thin plywood laminate, and two strips of 1x2x8 lumber and a box of small nails.

First I laid a strip of lumber flat on the floor.  Then I placed the square of wood on it, making the edges even.

On the other side I marked the edge of the square to know where to cut. Do this for two sides of the square.

Use wood glue to help the strips stay in place.

Nail the lumber to opposite sides of the board.

It will look like this:

Next line up the edge of the lumber to the lumber you nailed to the square.

On the other side mark where you will cut so the lumber will fit.

Glue and nail in these pieces.  (I had to show a little love and use my hammer to get the pieces to fit snugly so I could glue and nail them in.)

 All done, ready to paint!

Next paint a couple of layers underneath, sanding in between each layer.

You should probably paint the frames that you nailed and glued here too.  I didn’t, but I should’ve. 🙂

Is you don’t want the frame to be chalkboard, tape up the sides.

Here is it in the office all ready!  See the thumb tacks along the top?  I thought it might be useful to have some clips along the top to hold papers and pictures.  I already had some small binder clips, so I used the thumb tacks to hold the clips in place.  I know it is HUGE, but I use every inch of space on it during class!

Thanks for reading! Post a comment or share my link!


Cabinet Redo!

I sew. I paint. I create.

I NEED storage!!!!!!

So, I went yard sale-ing.


cabinet I got for $17!!!!!!!!!!!!

(I honestly think the lady didn’t want to get stuck with it.  It was marked $50!)

Isn’t it beautiful?!  Look at the dental molding and the fluted molding on the sides!


If you know me, you know I can’t leave it with this beautiful dated stain.  It will NOT do!

Here we are…  All sanded!

(Check back for a post about my sander!)

Here we are, all painted!

(Again, I will write a post about prepping your painting space in the future.)

I lightly sanded between each coat.  I borrowed my wonderful friend’s paint sprayer.  She’s a saint!

Here she is all done up in her new home!

The handles I spray painted silver, but don’t you think they need to be black?

Thanks for reading!


Frame Makeover

Another thing I LOVE:  Picture Frames!

Here is a great re-do of an old frame I found in a box in the attic.

Out dated and ugly, right?  No hope you say?

Well, there is hope!

Using a sheet of sandpaper and some good elbow grease, rough up that glossy finish.

Now paint!  I used black, and patiently waited for it to dry.

Next I painted a couple of coats of an antique white.  (Never white, white – it shows too many fingerprints!)

And again, I patiently waited for it to dry.

Lastly, I used the same sandpaper and sanded up spots on the frame.

 I tried to sand spots that would’ve been naturally worn if it had been on a table for years to give it a more natural worn look.

 I didn’t want it to look worn in the same spot on every side of the frame…

So there you have it!  And I LOVE it!


Halloween Wreath

I wanted a wreath that wasn’t the typical fall flowers or cornucopia of food for my door for fall and Halloween. So, I searched my local craft store and came home with a few things…

A wreath, black feathers, orange cat tails, little orange flowers, sheer black ribbon, and these fun fall beads…

I cut up the cat tails and used my glue gun to stick them in place. Did the same with the feathers and started to put in the beads and orange flowers. BUT the beads and orange didn’t look right so I ended up with this…

Sometimes simple is best! I love how it turned out!

Stay tuned for what I did with the beads!


Painting Easels!

 Painting Easels! 

My kids LOVE to paint!  They will paint anywhere and on anything!  I had this wood left over from another project and BAM! inspiration struck and I decided easels would be great for my budding artists!

I cut two equal length pieces of wood for each easel using my husband’s MY chop saw.  I also need a 12-18 in length of wood for each easel for the front to rest the art on.  I am making four easels so there are four sets in my picture.  See on one end they are angled?

I tipped the saw to about 22 degrees and chopped away one end on each piece.  (30 degrees really was too much!)  I did this to help each leg sit flat on the table top for added stability.

Several years ago I pulled these hinges off something else knowing that someday I would NEED them!  I am sure they are more heavy duty than I really need, but they were there and free!

(My helper is just a bit OCD!  See all the screws in each hole for each hinge?!)

Lay all your easel legs with the insides facing up.  Place a hinge on each one, using the holes in the hinge mark each screw hole.  (I placed the hinge so the moving part was resting on the top of the easel leg.)

I used the drill to start each hole.  (You don’t HAVE to do this, but I think it is best.)  See the block underneath?  That is to make sure I don’t ruin my bit by drilling all the way through and into the concrete!

After drilling your pilot holes, place your hinge over the holes and screw the hinge into place.  Little helpers LOVE to hand me hinges and screws!  A great way to keep those kiddos entertained while YOU are having fun!

On one side mark the center of the easel leg.  (See that after the hinges are attached the two legs angle in forming a ‘V’?)

I marked the center on each front easel leg and the center on each piece for the art to rest.

Line up the centers for each piece.

I drilled a pilot hole  and lifted it and globbed on a bit of wood glue.

I put them back together and screwed the two pieces together.  Leave it there to dry if you have time. I did not have time, the natives were getting restless and couldn’t wait any longer!  So….

We stood them up!

I talked them into letting them dry for a few minutes as we cleaned up the wood shavings from the saw and put screws, the drill, leftover wood (yippee!), and the measuring tape away.

Soon we were on our way to painting!!

(I saved a full box of packing paper and several packing boxes and they are our drop cloths and canvases!)