Archive for February, 2012

Wednesday Words: Judge Not

February 29, 2012

This quote from Pres. Thomas S. Monson was a particularly good reminder for me this week (and, sad to admit, probably most other weeks too):

Said the Savior, “Judge not.” 1 He continued, “Why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?” 2 Or, to paraphrase, why beholdest thou what you think is dirty laundry at your neighbor’s house but considerest not the soiled window in your own house?

None of us is perfect. I know of no one who would profess to be so. And yet for some reason, despite our own imperfections, we have a tendency to point out those of others. We make judgments concerning their actions or inactions.

There is really no way we can know the heart, the intentions, or the circumstances of someone who might say or do something we find reason to criticize. Thus the commandment: “Judge not.”

And, if you are like me and can’t get enough of the “Mormon Messages” from lds.org, you can click on the link below for more.

Looking Through Windows

–Lori T.

Tuesday Tips: Family Handyman

February 28, 2012

by Lori Trauntvein

Being the first-time homeowners that we are, Nate and I have found ourselves in several circumstances where we had a little job to do around the house that wasn’t quite technical enough to call someone, but we also didn’t know exactly how to go about it the most efficient way with all the needed supplies.  So naturally, we’d Google it.  One of my go-to websites is Family Handyman because it is easy to search, has a lot of lists and pictures, and describes about how long you can expect to spend on a project.  I know there are several DIY websites out there, but this has been particularly helpful for small jobs.

What are some of your favorite DIY resources?

Monday Menus: Pizza Factory breadsticks

February 28, 2012

by Lori Trauntvein

First of all, sorry this is late. My mom surprised me with a spur of the moment visit so we have all been busy being spoiled by her.  I couldn’t decide what recipe to post so I asked Olivia (5 yrs) what her favorite thing was that I make and she mentioned the breadsticks I made last week.  I am not much of a bread maker, but this recipe showed up on my desktop one day and I impulsively tried it out.  After all, it doesn’t require many ingredients, and for once I had all of them on hand.  You may have heard of the Pizza Factory.  I have only been there once, in St. George, and I don’t remember much about it.  So that isn’t what got me to try this recipe out.  It was just a craving for buttery, cheesy carbs.  And fortunately, they turned out well.  So if you are in the mood for something quick, easy, and yummy, give these a try.

http://www.favfamilyrecipes.com/2010/03/breadtwists-our-version-of-pizza.html

Enjoy!

Friday Favorites: MormonArtist Magazine

February 24, 2012

In the first issue, published in September 2008, Benjamin Crowder wrote,

“I see the purpose of this magazine as falling into three areas: First, to raise awareness and get the word out about what’s going on with Mormon arts. Second, to inspire and encourage artists both new and experienced alike to create new work. Third, to connect people—artists to other artists and to those who appreciate their work—and build a larger community, not just in the States but across the globe. I’m sure that among the Saints there are painters in Ghana, musicians in Russia, and writers in the Philippines who are using their artistic gifts to make the world a better place and to build the kingdom. We just don’t know about most of them, and that needs to change.”

I haven’t read many of the articles but my favorites struck a cord or something because they have stuck with me ever since.

This one by James Goldberg, Toward a Mormon Renaissance is gorgeous.  It talks about the Mormon Community -how our religion has formed us into a people and as such we have a heritage, wisdom and resources granted to anyone who wants it.  I just really love James Goldberg, too.  He wrote a response to an opinion piece in the New York Times that reaffirms my testimony in the church organization.

The next article by Jon Ogden, mormonartist: A Sign We’re Arriving has been on my mind a lot lately.  It highlights the difference between a Mormonartist and a Mormonartist -an artist who creates intentionally LDS-themed art and an artist who’s art is for the world but influenced by his or her LDS roots.

Here’s an excerpt:

“When President Kimball said that “if we strive for perfection — the best and greatest — and are never satisfied with mediocrity, we can excel,” he was likely referring to artistry. When he said, “to be an artist means hard work and patience and long-suffering,” he was likely referring to what it takes to achieve true artistic talent, not what it takes to accurately convey orthodox messages. His vision was for Mormonartists.

“I should reiterate that I’m not arguing for a retreat from Mormon themes in art. I’m thinking of the fantastic musician Sufjan Stevens, an artist who does not shy away from subtly visiting Christian themes in his songs while making innovative contributions to contemporary music (his album Illinois was deservedly on nearly every major list for the decade’s best albums.) The artists interviewed in this magazine have struck a similar balance in their respective genres. MormonArtist [Magazine] is a sign we’re arriving.”

Lovely.

And one last thought while we’re on the subject of LDS artists -my favorite artist ever.  I admit, it may not be for everyone but I love his art /can’t get enough of it / want to own everything he’s ever printed / hope to be wealthy enough one day to cover every wall of my house with it.  So.

Nauvoo Temple, 11 x 8.5 inches, pen & ink, acrylic, and color pencil on paper 11″ x 8.5″ pen & ink, acrylic, and color pencil on paper

Have no fear…, 52 x 42 inches, pen & ink and color pencil on paper 52″ x 42″ pen & ink, and color pencil on paper

Telestial, 11 x 8.5 inches, collage on paper

Here’s his webiste, if you’re interested: CaseyJexSmith.com

-Kelsie B

Thursday Thoughts: Joseph Smith

February 23, 2012

‎”It is better to feed ten impostors than to run the risk of turning away one honest petition.” Joseph Smith (Collected Works of Hugh Nibley, vol. 9, ch. 8, p. 226)

“Our Heavenly Father knew what was coming when in this latter day he restored the gospel in its purity. He knew of the apostasy in the world among his children, and that they had departed from the plain truth, and in his great mercy, he revealed this latter-day work. From the country he chose a boy from among the people, and inspired him to begin the work that was destined to revolutionize the religious world. He knew that the world was groping in darkness, and in mercy restored the light. There is no other way that happiness may be enjoyed by the children of men but by lives of righteousness, and people cannot live righteous lives and be out of harmony with truth. There was much truth in the world but it was so mixed with error that the Lord himself told the Prophet Joseph Smith that the men who were the teachers and instructors in the churches taught for doctrine the commandments of men, and warned the boy that he was not to be identified with them. He then restored the gospel, the power of God unto salvation, unto all those who will believe and obey it.”

-President George Albert Smith in Conference Report, Oct. 1916, 46–47

There is a gorgeous film that the church has put out on the life of Joseph Smith.  Wordpress won’t let me embed the video itself, but here’s the link:

Joseph Smith: The Prophet of the Restoration

-Kelsie B

Wednesday Words: Individual Worth

February 22, 2012

“[The] special blending of our common origins and characteristics [together with] our unique attributes, experiences, and specialized challenges . . . makes each of us who and what we are.”

-Cecil O. Samuelson Jr.

“As an exceptional son or daughter of God, you are sorely needed. There is an urgent need for men and women who will stand for principles against the growing pressures to compromise those very principles. Men and women are required who will act nobly and courageously for what the Lord has defined as right, not for what is politically correct or socially acceptable. We need individuals who have the spiritual, righteous influence that will motivate others to enduring good.”

-Richard G. Scott

Tuesday Tips: Creative Ideas & Inspiration

February 21, 2012

Some good rules to live by even if you’re more disciplined than I am (which I’m sure you are).

-Kelsie B

Monday Menus: English Muffins

February 20, 2012

My family tends to go through a lot of English Muffins year-round.

As much as I like being able to make everything by myself, the recipes for homemade English Muffins just never looked very appealing.  In fact, I never even bothered to try it until I was out at college (English Muffins do not taste the same in Rexburg).  It’s really much more simple than I had thought.

These are seriously the easiest things.  Mix the ingredients, roll the dough into balls, place them on a griddle and cook, flipping once.

For the ingredients and step-by-step photographic instructions, go here: La Petite Brioche

-Kelsie B

Friday Favorites

February 16, 2012

I thought I would share two favorite things of mine. One is a TV series on PBS’s Masterpiece Theatre called  Downton Abbey. You can watch it on a weekend night on any PBS station (the second season) or online at PBS. org.   It is only on until the end of this month, but you should watch the first season first, and  you can find that on PBS.org or on NetFlix.   If you love British dramas, you will love this program.

Another favorite that I will share is the singer Michael Buble.   Kelsie says his voice is smooth, like chocolate and that describes him  perfectly.  He sings the old songs of Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole and even more modern songs.   His sweet voice is sure to please.

Here’s an example:

Michael Buble – Feeling Good

Pam

Thursday Thoughts

February 16, 2012

Our lesson on Sunday in Relief Society was lesson #3, “Our Testimony of Jesus Christ”.  Here are some words of George Albert Smith as he discusses his testimony of the Savior.

“I have been buoyed up and, as it were, lifted out of myself and given power not  my own to teach the glorious  truths proclaimed by the Redeemer of the world.  I have  not seen Him face to face  but have enjoyed the companionship of His spirit and felt His presence in a way not to be mistaken.  I know that my Redeemer lives and gladly yield my humble efforts to establish His teachings. . .Every fibre of my being vibrates with the knowledge that He lives and some day all men will know it.”

“The Savior died that we might live.  He overcaame death and the grave and holds out to all who obey His teachings the hope of a glorious resurrection. . .I know this is the work of the Lord, that Jesus was indeed our  Savior.”

President Smith passed away on his 81st birthday, April 4, 1951. Duing the final moments of his life, with his family close by, his son asked, “Father, is there something you’d like to say to the family–something special?”

“With a smile, he reaffirmed the testimony  he had shared numerous times throughout  his life: “Yes, only this: I know that my Redeemer liveth; I know that my Redeemer liveth.”