Monthly Archives: February 2008

Does money buy happiness?

People say that money is not the key to happiness, but I think if you have enough money, you can have a key made. Joan Rivers

I saw this quote today in a magazine and for some reason it really made me laugh. Perhaps because I had just coughed up 80.00 for a new med for one of my children. I used to complain about the many 50.00 copays we have, but this new one was an “ouch.”

20 questions

I just bought the electronic game of 20 questions for my kids. I figured it would help the English language learners improve their vocabulary as well as improve their reading abilities. If you’re not familiar with the game, you choose something–be it animal, vegetable, mineral or other, and the device asks you up to 25 questions (Yeah, I know, so why is it called 20 questions???) trying to solve what you chose.

One of the questions when we were playing the game today was “Can you use it for recreation?” Another question was “Does it give you pleasure?” I couldn’t help but think that for an 80.00 co-pay, the least we could be doing is purchasing recreational drugs that brought us pleasure! I think that would qualify as money buying happiness! JUST KIDDING!

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Turning 39? Celebrating birthdays

G. with candlesWell, 39 was what the waiter announced when Jeff and I took our neighbor out to dinner tonight for her birthday and the wait staff sang to her. She’s actually 82, but you’d never know by how active she is. How many people do you know in their 80’s who put their i-Pod in their pocket before they go for their daily walk? I was teasing her one day as we were walking together about what great genes she had, and said “How old was your mother when she finally passed away? 95?”

“No, she was 97” came the reply. “And she would have lived even longer had she not gotten in a car accident that caused some of her organs to start to fail. My grandma lived to be over 100, and my mother wanted to prove she could live even longer. ”

My kids just love this neighbor and so do Jeff and I. Here she is blowing out the candles on the cheesecake I made her. blowing out the candles We scrounged up a few birthday candles as we clearly weren’t going to put more than 80 on this size of a cheesecake. She’s a lifetime member of Weight Watchers, but we agreed that if you break the chips in half at a Mexican restaurant, they don’t have any points. Cheesecake of course never has any points as long as it is for your birthday. 🙂

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Protected: Texas – God’s Country

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Protected: It’s Rodeo Time!

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Elder Packer refuted “Youth were generals in Heaven” quote long ago

Unfortunately, with the passing of President Gordon B. Hinckley, one of the “Mormon folkore” stories has resurfaced with a vengeance. Blogs galore have it quoted, most attributing the quote to Elder Boyd K. Packer. Unfortunately, there is no truth to the story, and even though it is a “feel good” type of quote that makes people say “Wow!”, Elder Packer refuted the quote clear back in 2001 here via Deseret News.

At the risk of giving it even more press, the quote goes along these lines:

You were generals in the War in Heaven and one day when you are in the spirit world, you will be enthralled by those you are associated with. You will ask someone in which time period they lived and you might hear, “I was with Moses when he parted the Red Sea,” or “I helped build the pyramids’” or “I fought with Captain Moroni.” And as you are standing there in amazement, someone will turn to you and ask you which of the prophets’ time did you live in? And when you say “Gordon B. Hinckley” a hush will fall over every hall and corridor in Heaven, and all in attendance will bow at your presence. You were held back six thousand years because you were the most talented, most obedient, most courageous, and most righteous.

I admit the first time I heard it I had to chuckle. “A hush will fall over every hall and corridor in Heaven, and all in attendance will bow at your presence”?? First of all, if you are familiar with Elder Packer’s words, that just isn’t his style. He doesn’t spend time writing touchy feely, warm fuzzy, “Saturday’s Warrior” type stories to the youth of the church such as above. Actually–and this is just my take, not doctrine–whenever the Brethren need someone who will cut to the chase on difficult topics such as abortion, homosexuality, chastity, etc., Elder Packer has been one chosen to speak out.

Yes, the Brethren have been quoted numerous times as stating that the Lord’s most valiant children have been reserved for these latter-days. Elder M. Russel Ballard, in a talk titled “One More” in the May 2005 Liahona stated:

First, make sure all of our youth understand who they are. From their earliest days in Primary, our children sing “I Am a Child of God” (Hymns, no. 301). Help them to know what it really means to be a child of God. Remind them that they are here at this particular time in the history of the world, with the fulness of the gospel at their fingertips, because they made valiant choices in the premortal existence. Our youth need to stand firm for righteousness and truth.

Notice, however, that his paragraph ends with “our youth need to stand firm for righteousness and truth”, not “because they made valiant choices in the premortal existence all will bow at their presence.” Keeping of your first estate does not guarantee the keeping of your second–here on earth. We were sent to earth to be tried and tested, and have to decide moment by moment whether we will stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things and in all places…

Wouldn’t we all be better off immersing ourselves in the doctrines of the gospel, rather than these cute little stories that many have referred to as “spiritual Twinkies”? Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, in “A Teacher Come from God,” Ensign, May 1998, p. 25 stated,


The need for continuing such solid teaching is obvious. In times like ours we all need what Mormon called “the virtue of the word of God” because, he said, it “had [a] more powerful effect upon the minds of the people than the sword, or anything else, which had happened unto them.” 17 When crises come in our lives—and they will—the philosophies of men interlaced with a few scriptures and poems just won’t do. (emphasis mine) Are we really nurturing our youth and our new members in a way that will sustain them when the stresses of life appear? Or are we giving them a kind of theological Twinkie—spiritually empty calories? President John Taylor once called such teaching “fried froth,” the kind of thing you could eat all day and yet finish feeling totally unsatisfied. (See John Taylor, The Gospel Kingdom, sel. G. Homer Durham (1943), 78.)

The quote falsely attributed to Elder Packer could fit the category of fried froth. It might make you feel good momentarily inside, but when crises do indeed come into our lives, it doesn’t give you sound doctrine with which to firmly grip on to your testimony. Instead, sound doctrine comes through immersion in the scriptures.

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President Gordon B. Hinckley

I have not blogged for almost a month due to an incredibly busy schedule that took me out of town for awhile. While I was gone, however, President Gordon B. Hinckley, 15th President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, passed away on January 27, 2007.

Let me say that with the passing of our beloved Prophet, President Gordon B. Hinckley, my heart feels an emptiness that he left behind. Having served as prophet of the LDS church since March 12, 1995, for many youth today, President Hinckley was the only prophet they really knew. A beautiful tribute to his life can be found at the LDS Church Newsroom website.

I loved President Hinckley, and although am saddened by his passing, I am happy that he is with his beloved wife, Marjorie Pay Hinckley once again. One of my favorite photos of President Hinckley, taken by Scot Facer Proctor, is below of him doing his famous “cane wave” shown below in Accra, Ghana. He was told by his doctors to “carry a cane”, and that is what he tended to do…carry a cane, rather than actually use it to support himself while walking.

cane wave of Pres. Hinckley

Brother Proctor honored President Hinckley with a tribute in photos that he took of the prophet, found at Meridian Magazine here. Many beautiful articles about his life and his dedication to temple building can also be found at Meridian Magazine.

He truly was a wonderful man, a beloved prophet of God, and one who will be sorely missed.

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