Thursday, December 2, 2010

Becky Kelley - Where's the Line to See Jesus - OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO




Here’s the story behind the song:

About the Song

While at the mall a couple of years ago, my then four year old nephew, Spencer, saw kids lined up to see Santa Claus. Having been taught as a toddler that Christmas is the holiday that Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus, he asked his mom, "where's the line to see Jesus"? My sister mentioned this to my dad, who immediately became inspired and jotted words down to a song in just a few minutes. After putting music to the words, and doing a quick recording at home, he received a great response from friends. He sent the song off to Nashville without much response, except for a Christian song writer who suggested adding a bridge at the end of the first chorus. My dad then asked if I wanted to record the song to see what we could do with it. I listened to the song, made a few changes to the words to make it flow better, and we headed to Shock City Studios. It was at the studio where Chris, owner and producer, rewrote the 2nd verse and part of the chorus... with goosebumps and emotions high, we were all hopeful and felt like we had something special. The demo was recorded in just under 2 hours and sent off again to Nashville... still no response. Then 2 weeks before Christmas last year, my cousins Greg and Robbie decided to do a video to see what we could accomplish on YouTube. The first day we had 3000 hits and it soared from there. We received e-mails, phone calls, Facebook messages from people all over asking for the music, CD's, iTunes, anything... we had nothin'. After a couple of meetings with Chris following the amazing response, we got serious. We headed back into the studio this past spring... this time with guitars, drums, bass, pianos, choirs... the real deal.... and here we are today. Getting iTunes set up, a website put together, and loving that thousands upon thousands of Christians have come together... remembering the true meaning of Christmas. Out of the mouths of babes come profound truths that many adults can not understand. Hopefully Spencer's observation will cause people all over to reflect on the love of Jesus, and that one day we will all stand in line to see Him. We are most thankful to our Heavenly Father to have this chance to share our music with you. Merry Christmas everyone.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Monday, August 2, 2010

A Cool Summer Treat !!!! :)


A remarkable and very cool summer treat presented by PSsssssttt (http://pssst.generalmills.com/) and friends of mine from the Naperville 6th Ward!!

"Discover a delicious new way to cool down on a hot summer day with a frozen creamy Yoplait Whips! yogurt! Simply put your favorite flavor of Yoplait Whips! in the freezer overnight and viola, a single serving frozen treat without the fat or calories of regular ice cream! ... Flavors include: Chocolate Mousse, Chocolate Raspberry, Key Lime Pie, Lemon Burst, Orange Creme, Peaches 'N' Cream, Raspberry Mousse, Strawberry Mist, and Vanilla Creame."
-Shelly

Sunday, July 11, 2010

B & V, a Close Tie !!!

Baking soda vs. vinegar, two valuable household items you should already have in your cupboards, that can literally turn your life around and also be a life saving and savings device. Baking soda can cure septic tanks, extinguish fires, freshen up hall closets and stuffed animals, deodorize and clean dish washers, lunch boxes, sneakers, garbage disposals, drains and refrigerators, along with being a key ingredient for cakes and cookies. What would we do without baking soda; and what would we do without the next critical household article that 'you cannot (or should not) live without'?? .... VINEGAR!!!


Here are 23 out of a hundred uses for vinegar, thanks to the good folks at healthy & green living:

  1. Adding a few tablespoons of white vinegar to the water when poaching eggs helps the whites stay formed. Add a few tablespoons to the water when boiling eggs, and if any shells crack, the whites won't leak out.

  2. If your leafy veggies are wilted, soaking them in cold water with a little vinegar can perk them right up.

  3. After chopping an onion, you can eliminate the odor from your hands by rubbing them with a bit of white vinegar.

  4. When cooking vegetables from the cabbage family (like broccoli or cauliflower), adding a little vinegar to the water will perk up the taste and reduce the gassiness they can induce. This also works when cooking beans, making Mexican food a far more atractive option.

  5. Clean and deodorize the garbage disposal by mixing equal parts vinegar and baking soda and putting it down the drain. After letting this fizzing mixture sit for a few minutes, flush out the drain with warm water for a clean and stink-free sink.

  6. The steam from a boiling bowl of vinegar and water can loosen caked-on food and get ride of odors in the microwave, too.

  7. One of my favorite vinegar remedies and my personal weapon against fruit flies is to set out a small dish of white vinegar and some smashed fruit, covered with plastic wrap with some holes in it-the flies crawl into the trap, but can't get out.

  8. If your stemware is cloudy from the dishwasher, wrap the glasses in paper towels soaked in vinegar, let them sit, and the cloudy deposits will rinse right off.

  9. There's no need to use bleach on the grouting when you can let vinegar soak on it and then scrub with a toothbrush.

  10. Bring lightly scuffed or dirty DVDs back to life by wiping them down with some vinegar on a soft cloth.

  11. If you have water condensation marks on your wood, just rub the piece of furniture with equal parts vinegar and vegetable oil to remove them. Make sure to rub with the grain, and then invest in a set of coasters.

  12. If a child has an "accident" on a mattress, clean it with a solution of vinegar and water. Afterwards, pour some baking soda onto the mattress, and brush or vacuum the residue once it's dry.

  13. Spraying vinegar onto deodorant-stained shirts before the wash can remove the discoloration. It's also great for fighting mustard, tomato sauce, or ketchup stains.

  14. Adding a cupful of vinegar to the rinse cycle of your washing machine can freshen up bright colors and give you laundry cleaner. Acetic acid won't harm fabrics, but it dissolves the soap residue that can dull dark clothing. It also acts as a fabric softener, a static reducer, and a mildew-inhibitor.

  15. Vinegar will also loosen chewing gum stuck to car upholstery, rugs, and carpeting.

  16. If your car still sports a bumper sticks from two electrons ago, remove it by spraying the decal with white vinegar to saturate the area, and the sticker will peel off in a few hours. (You might need to spray it a few times.)

  17. Wiping down your car windows and windshield with a three-to-one vinegar-water mixture can keep them frost-free in the wintertime.

  18. Kill weeds and crabgrass growing in sidewalks and driveways by pouring vinegar onto them. A half-and-half solution of vinegar and water can even kill garden slugs if it's sprayed directly onto them.

  19. To extend the life of cut flowers, add a few tablespoons of vinegar to the water in their vase, along with a teaspoon of sugar.

  20. Wash out itchy ears with diluted vinegar to keep dogs and cats from scratching at them.

  21. Cats avoid vinegar, so to keep them from scratching furniture or sitting on certain areas, spray a vinegar solution on the spot.

  22. For outdoor areas, soak a sponge in vinegar and place it in the forbidden area to keep cats away. If kitty likes to mark his territory, spraying the area with vinegar can help eliminate the smell and deter recurrences.

  23. Vinegar gets rid of skunk odor. Soak the dog or cat with a half-and-half vinger and water solution, and then rise them with fresh water.

Vinegar can disinfect, deodorize, and de-gunkify just about everything. From shower curtains to sofa cushions, there's not much that it can't do. As an alternative to expensive and harsh cleaning chemicals, vinegar is something you can feel good about keeping in your cupboards. White vinegar and baking soda can even remove product buildup from hair and leave it soft and manageable. A product that can clean you, the dog, your car, and your house is what I'd call a good, green buy.

by Divine Caroline

There you go! A vote and hand ups gesture for the all encompassing and magnificient, VINEGAR! Next month I will add some invaluable tidbits and interesting facts on brilliant ways we can be using our toothpaste!

-Shelly

Saturday, July 3, 2010

The Healing Field


Before Lynn and I moved to Illinois and before my dad died, Lynn and I took my father on a small trip to the Salt Lake Valley where a town had erected American flags for all the men, women and children who died violently and unexpectedly on September 11, 2001 in New York, Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C. lovingly called, the 'Healing Field'. Another section of lawn was dedicated to the men and women in the armed forces who had given their lives in Afghanistan and Iraq by the summer of 2003. I know the number of military deaths have quad-droupled from the summer of 2003.

We walked amongst rows and rows and rows of American Flags and flags from other countries who had family members perish on Sept. 11th and also from wars in Afghanistan and Iraq as they fought shoulder to shoulder with our troops. The flags waved gently in the breeze. The bright red, white and blue were transcendent and beautiful amongst the blue sky. The scene caused a lump to come to my throat and I could feel the tears begin to flow. Here were the lives of thousands of individuals, each one represented by a flag. Some were at work in their office, others were visiting the Twin Towers on a tour, others were dug down deep in trenches of the heat and sand of Iraq and Afghanistan; and Poof! ..... They were gone!

As we approach the birthday of the United States of America tomorrow, I would like to pay tribute to those brave soldiers who every day fight for our freedom and the free agency of other countries. To the men and women who will not be coming home to the arms of their fathers, mothers, wives, husbands, children, family and friends, but instead were doing, 'what they were suppose to be doing'. May each of us find a 'Healing Field' in our hearts as we celebrate the 4th of July and at the same time remember all those who have sacrificed THEIR ALL for this country!

We are indeed blessed to be living in such a fine land. As many statesmen and soldiers can attest, 'Freedom isn't free', there is always a high human sacrificial cost to maintain the freedom our country has had and we now enjoy in the year 2010.

-Shelly

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

June 2010

Oh my, today is June 30th ... where has the time gone? We are six months into 2010 and only have six more month of this year to go!


I am filled with so much emotion this morning for such a wonderful month. The month started with a visit from my sister, Linda. She arrived on June 1st and by June 9th Linda was back at her home in Castle Dale, Utah. The days and time I spent with Linda during that short period was magical and memorable. We visited downtown Chicago, toured various fun sites around Chicago/Naperville/Aurora and then went to Nauvoo and Carthage IL to round out Linda's visit. Everything was wonderful! Even the weather cooperated, which for IL, is quite a feat during the rainy season! I have put together a quick little photo synopsis of our time with Linda, which I will post at another time.


I also started a new job on May 17th and of all places it is in a dental office. (http://washingtondental.com/) The dentist for Washington Dental (in Naperville) is Dr. (Randy) Vaughan! There was no training with the new position, which is so helpful in a new working environment, so my training has come from Dr. Vaughan himself, in helping me to understand the various dental instruments, techniques and procedures, the office part has come from trial and error. I am hoping by my 3-month mark that I will have most of the information down pat! Right now, it is frustrating yet rewarding when I can print off a patient's statement, send a recall notice or dental insurance out. My dad was a dentist. Mine, and most of my sisters, first jobs were working with my dad in his dental office. I feel like I am back to my 'roots' so to speak with this job; and yet the dental field has grown in leaps and bounds from when I was working with my dad, so all in all, it is indeed a NEW, LEARNING and CHALLENGING environment for me.


The first part of June in Aurora has been very wet with tremendous thunder and lightning storms so I haven't been outside much after dark. But last night I spotted them!!! I've been waiting and waiting .... and there they were lighting up the evening sky .... fireflies!!! We do not have fireflies in the Rockies or the West, so these winged illuminated insects are something I have looked forward to while living in IL during the summer months. Fireflies are magical winged fortresses of light, dancing and darting among the moon and darkened IL skies. The fireflies show up, or at least I notice them, around the time of my birthday (June 23).

The month of June (2010) has been an interesting, fantastic, challenging and electrifying month for sure! I can't wait to see what is in store for the remaining months of 2010!!!!

-Shelly

PS
Lynn has his colonoscopy on Friday (7/2/10)!!!

PPS
They will not be posted online as Shelly's were. - Lynn

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

A Thought from my Friend, Bobbie Lou!


If you Wake up in a red room

with no windows and doors,

DON'T panic .... you're just

in my heart!!!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Another Year Over Another Year Ahead! :)



Tomorrow will be my Birthday! I love birthdays, except when I am the center of attention; however, I do enjoy the over exaggerated celebration and heralded birthday greetings from family and friends, some whom I haven't heard from in years.

My birthday though is my own special internal compass day when I look at where I have been in my life, things I have done, goals I still have and where I want to be when I die! If I was standing on the ruler of my life, I would be at the midway point. Am I happy? YOU BET I AM!!! Could I be a better person? I am a good person but I can always be a better person!!! Am I fulfilled in every aspect of my life? Yes and no. Yes, in that I am fulfilled; and no because there is more fulfillment to come. I Am In Love with Life itself and I feel so blessed and grateful to have this small place in the gigantic quantum of galaxies and space known as earth to live on. I am blessed to know God and to also know that when I kneel down to pray in the morning , in the evening, or while driving in my car, that He listens to me. I feel grateful to have a a strong feeling, reverence and love for Jesus Christ, my Savior and your Savior!

I found '39 Things I have Learned In My Life', from off the Internet which so applies to me and I would like to pass it on since I am in total agreement with Michelle R. Brennan, and I couldn't say it any better!


  1. Listening to the Spirit's inner voice ultimately makes life easier.
  2. "Letting go" is the only way to keep something or someone in your life.
  3. Everyone should have a cat because a cat makes you smile once in a while.
  4. Children are the best mirrors.
  5. Love is a commitment to growth.
  6. Dogs understand love better than people do.
  7. Angels inhabit human forms.
  8. "We" vs. "They" thinking creates fear and conflict. Harmony requires a sense of community.
  9. Quiet reflection feeds the soul.
  10. Books are the ambrosia of life.
  11. Freedom is worth the responsibility.
  12. Friends who listen are rare treasures.
  13. Ice cream can make almost anyone feel better.
  14. Life is a privilege.
  15. Goodnight hugs and kisses heal the day.
  16. Tight shoes don't make your feet look THAT much smaller. Vanity isn't worth the pain.
  17. There's a gift in every lesson of life.
  18. No one is an expert on you, except you.
  19. Sunshine promotes a positive attitude.
  20. Holding onto grievances smothers joy.
  21. Help is as close as a prayer.
  22. Truth is simple.
  23. One person CAN make a difference in the world.
  24. Change only APPEARS difficult.
  25. Open minds are healthy minds.
  26. People who follow their bliss are the most interesting people.
  27. You don't own an idea until you understand it with your heart.
  28. There is no end to learning, you just move to the next level.
  29. There is ALWAYS another way of looking at things.
  30. Peace is a choice.
  31. Your life is your creation.
  32. It's not worth the calories unless it's chocolate.
  33. Whatever you give eventually comes back to you.
  34. New adventures help you feel young.
  35. It is your inner power not your weakness that most frightens you.
  36. Forgiveness is a gift you give yourself.
  37. Everyone has the same amount of faith, they just invest it differently.
  38. Older doesn't mean wiser unless you've looked within.
  39. Sometimes crying is the best response.

-Shelly

Monday, June 21, 2010

The Amazing and Incredible Invention Ever, Baking Soda


Okay, I told Lynn and I was going to blog about baking soda and he gave me a 'look' only Lynn could give me as to say, 'Are you totally crazy'? He shrugged his shoulders and walked away. And, I guess in a way I am a little crazy! I love to take every day things I use around the house, such as vinegar, cucumbers and now baking soda, which I usually use to bake cookies, cakes or bread, and now find out they can cure, add or take away about anything!!! So, if you don't mind .... I'll just ramble on for a few about this remarkable product known as baking soda. If you have no desire to read about baking soda you have my permission to exit our blog, but you have to be sure to come back in a few days or even next week for another thrilling and yet not to remarkable blog entry from the ... 'World of Lynn and Shelly Hook'.


Here are sixty-one 'happening' things you can do with baking soda inside and outside your home, straight from Bellybytes.com!
  • To make your own baking power, stir and sift together 2 parts of Cream of Tartar to 1 part baking soda and 1 part cornstarch.
  • Be sure to keep an extra box of baking soda by your stove in case of a grease or electrical fire. Scatter the soda by the handful to safely put it out.
  • Keep a container of baking soda in your garage as well as in your car to put out a fire. It won't damage anything it touches.
  • Baking soda will also put out fires in clothing, fuel, wood, upholstery and rugs.
  • Clean vegetables and fruit with baking soda. Sprinkle in water, soak and rinse the produce.
  • Wash the garbage cans with baking soda.
  • Soak and wash diapers with baking soda.
  • Oil and grease - stained clothing washes out better when baking soda is added to the washing water.
  • Clean your fridge and freeze with dry baking soda sprinkled on a damp cloth. Rinse with clear water.
  • Deodorize your fridge and freezer by putting an open container of baking soda to absorb odors. Stir and turn over the baking soda from time to time. Replace every 2 months.
  • Soda absorbs kitty litter odors. Cover the bottom of the kitty box with 1 part baking soda, then add a layer of three parts kitty litter on top.
  • Always add 1/2-cup baking soda to your washing machine load.
  • Clean combs and brushes in a baking soda solution.
  • Wash food and drink containers with baking soda and water.
  • Wash marble-topped furniture with a solution of 3-tablespoons of baking soda in 1 quart of warm water. Let stand awhile, then rinse.
  • Clean formica counter tops with baking soda on a damp sponge.
  • Wash out thermos bottles and cooling containers with baking soda and water to get ride of stale smells.
  • To remove stubborn stains from marble, formica or plastic surfaces, scour with a paste of baking soda and water.
  • Wash glass or stainless steel coffee pots (but not aluminum) in a baking soda solution (3-tablespoons soda to 1 quart water).
  • Run your coffee maker through its cycle with a baking soda solution. Rinse.
  • Give baby bottles a good cleaning with baking soda and hot water.
  • Sprinkle baking soda on barbecue grills, let soak, then rinse off.
  • Sprinkle baking soda on greasy garage floor. Let stand, scrub and rinse.
  • For silver pieces without raised patterns or cemented-on handles; place the silver on aluminum foil in an enamel pot. Add boiling water and 4 tablespoons baking soda. Let stand, rinse and dry.
  • Reduce odor build-up in your dishwasher by sprinkling some baking soda on the bottom.
  • Run your dishwasher through its cycle with baking soda in it instead of soap to give it a good cleaning.
  • To removed burned-on food from a pan: let the pan soak in baking soda and water for 10 minutes before washing. Or scrub the pot with dry soda and a moist scouring pad.
  • For a badly burned pan with a thick layer of burned-on food: pour a thick layer of baking soda directly onto the bottom of the pan, then sprinkle on just enough water so as to moisten the baking soda. Leave the pot overnight, then scrub it clean the next day.
  • Rub stainless steel and chrome with a moist cloth and dry baking soda to shine it up. Rinse and dry. On stainless steel, scrub in the direction of the grain.
  • Clean plastic, porcelain and glass with dry soda on a damp cloth. Rinse and dry.
  • Remove that bad smell from ashtrays with baking soda and water.
  • Sprinkle a bit of dry baking soda in your ashtrays to prevent smoldering and reduce odor.
  • Clean your bathroom with dry baking soda on a moist sponge - - sink, tub, tiles, shower stall, etc.
  • Keep your drains clean and free-flowing by putting 4 tablespoons of soda in them each week. Flush the soda down with hot water.
  • Soak your shower curtains in water and baking soda to clean them.
  • To remove strong odors from your hands, wet your hands and rub them hard with baking soda, then rinse.
  • Sprinkle baking soda on your wet toothbrush and brush your teeth and dentures with it.
  • Sprinkle baking soda in tennis shoes, socks, boots, slipper to eliminate odors.
  • Add 1/2-cup or more of baking soda to your bath water to soften your skin.
  • Putting 2-tablespoons of baking soda in your baby's bath water will help relieve diaper rash irritations.
  • Apply baking soda directly to insect bites, rashes and poison ivy to relieve discomfort. Make a paste with water.
  • Take a baking soda bath to relieve general skin irritations such as measles and chicken pox.
  • Take 1/2-teaspoon of baking soda in one-half glass of water to relieve acid indigestion or heartburn.
  • Gargle with 1/2-teaspoon in one-half glass of water. Freshens and cleans your mouth.
  • Used as a mouthwash, baking soda will also relieve canker sore pain.
  • To relieve sunburn: use a paste of baking soda and water.
  • Bug bites: use a poultice of baking soda and vinegar.
  • Bee sting: use a poultice of baking soda and water.
  • Windburns: moisten some baking soda and apply directly.
  • Making Play Clay with baking soda: combine 1 1/4 cups water, 2 cups soda, 1 cup cornstarch.
  • Use baking soda as an underarm deodorant.
  • If your baby spits up on his shirt after feeding, moisten a cloth, dip it in baking soda and dab at the dribbled shirt. The odor will go away.
  • When scalding a chicken, add 1-teaspoon of baking soda to the boiling water. The feathers will come off easier and the flesh will be clean and white.
  • Repel rain from windshield. Put gobs of baking soda on a dampened cloth and wipe windows inside and out.
  • Add baking soda to water to soak dried beans to make them more digestible.
  • Add baking soda to water to remove the "gamey" taste from wild game.
  • Use banking soda to sweeten sour dishcloths.
  • Use baking soda dry with a small brush to rub canvas handbags clean.
  • Use to remove melted plastic bread wrapper from toaster. Damp a cloth and make a mild abrasive with baking soda.
  • To eliminate dog odors or just freshen up the air, sprinkle baking soda on your carpet where your dog lies and vacuum up. Leave the soda on the carpet for half an hour. It also eliminates odor in your vacuum after it has been vacuumed up. A great way to freshen up your home air during the winter when everything is closed up.

And of course, the list could go ON and ON and ON and ON, but I will end the list, or at least my list of things we can do with baking soda, right here! :)

-Shelly

Friday, June 18, 2010

Happy Father's Day!









To my husband, to my father and Lynn's father, and to my grandfathers and Lynn's grandfathers, the brothers and brothers-in-law, and to all the uncles and the most awesome(est) ever nephews, and to the men in my life who are my neighbors, work associates, bosses, and friends whom I love and adore with all of my heart,
Happy Father's Day!
A few inspirational highlights about fathers and fatherhood from Bill Cosby, the father who has made many of us laugh for years.

"A new father quickly learns that his child invariably comes to the bathroom at precisely the times when he's there, as if he needed the company. The only way for this father to be certain of bathroom privacy is to shave at the gas station."

"If the new American father feels bewildered and even defeated, let him take comfort from the fact that whatever he does in any fathering situation has a fifty percent chance of being right."

"Nothing I've ever done has given me more joys and rewards that being a father to my children."
-Shelly

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Happy Memorial Day

This is a great video by Oliver North regarding our soldiers.



It is that time of year to think about those that have gone before us and sacrificed thier lives so that we might have the Freedom that we enjoy.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Affirmative!

We received word earlier in the week that the chunk of skin that was biopsied off of Lynn's face has come back as Basal Cell Carcinoma, which is the most common and curable type of skin cancer. Lynn had two objects biopsied. One object was at the top and to the right side of Lynn's nose, near his eyeglasses nose pad. The other biopsy was completed on a mole under Lynn's armpit. There was no cancer cells found on the mole under Lynn's armpit. We are now waiting to get in to an ENT (Ear, Nose & Throat) doctor who will do the necessary surgery to remove the cancerous tissue.

The little shiny and pearly nodule appeared on Lynn's nose about 9 months ago. I didn't really pay attention to it because I just thought another mole was starting to form. At first Lynn thought the nodule would just go away but it didn't. When Lynn would vigourasly wash his face or dry his face with a towel, the nodule would crack and bleed as if the skin were fragile.

Lynn had his annual physical a week ago. Our doctor took a look at the nodule and recommended him immediately to a Dermatologist. The Dermatologist made a quick diagnosis and now we are waiting to get into an ENT and take care of the surgical procedure.

Lynn and I due to our fair skin are more susceptible to Basal cell carcinoma. It is not as evasive as the other skin cancers, but it can deteriorate the skin tissue around the cancerous region and can infect and affect a close nerve.

I am so glad Lynn listened to that still small voice inside of him and that he is dealing with this little radical nodule that decided to invade his precious face.

I feel so grateful and blessed to have these medical marvels available at our fingertips. The medical industry has come so far in study and treatment of cancer, of which my family is taking full advantage of.

-Shelly

Monday, May 10, 2010

Inside the Wave















Waimea Bay shore-break surfing pioneer, husband, and father of two, Clark Little has gained nationwide recognition for his photography with appearances on Good Morning America, Inside Edition, and many local news stations across the U.S. .... "Clark's view" of the ocean that most will only be able to experience safely on land while studying one of Clark's photos. ... These incredible images of waves in the Hawaiian Islands were taken by Clark ... He captures magical moments inside the tube as surfers say."

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!

A wealth of emotions run through my soul every year at this time. It is on Mother's Day when I think of my mother who died when I was 22 years old from cancer. My mind and heart dwells on the woman my dad remarried and who I now think of as mother, a friend, and in some ways my very soul mate.

I was so richly blessed to have the mother I did. It was her face I saw every morning when I woke up and it was her beautiful face I saw when I was tucked into bed at night. My mother brought joy, laughter, history, the love of music, and a thirst for continual knowledge. My mother installed in each of her children valuable characteristics we hold close to our hearts. I knew God lived because my mother knew God lived. I also knew when my mom knelt to pray God heard her morning, evening and silent prayers. Above all, I knew and my siblings knew, mom loved dad and dad loved mom!

After my mom died, another remarkable, feisty, humorous, compassionate and spiritual woman entered our lives named, Francine Smith Swanson Larsen. The world may label Fran as my stepmother, but I call her 'MOM' (or if you look at mom upside down it spells, 'WoW!)! This precious angel may not have rocked me to sleep at night, but she has wiped away my tears. She was with me when I married Lynn. One mother set my foot on a certain pathway and the other mother is making sure I stay on that straight and narrow path.

Before Fran and dad got married, our family size consisted of five. Our family doubled in size and blessings when mom brought with her four amazing daughters and one remarkable son. Our family unit is now eleven!!!! All nine of us know our mother believes in God and that she loves God. We also know that God hears our mother's morning, evening and silent prayers as she petitions her pleas to God. All nine of us know mom loved dad and that dad was completely enthralled and in love with mom!!!

I am so blessed on this eve before Mother's Day to ponder and to be blessed by two extraordinary women in my life who I call, 'MOM'! I walk(ed) and talk(ed) with angels on earth and I call them 'mom'! No angel in heaven could be as beautiful or exemplary as my mom(s).

I never had the chance to meet Lynn's mother. She died from cancer before Lynn and I were married. From the pictures I've seen and stories from my father-in-law, her children and friends, she too, was admired and loved by all who knew her. Lynn's mother was God-fearing. She had a voracious appetite and love for music, literature and gardens. Lynn's mother's proudest achievement was her five beautiful daughters and two handsome sons. My mother-in-law's daughters (my sisters-in-law) radiate their mother's image to me every day by their kind hearts and benevolent love towards their own families and to complete strangers. In my sisters-in-law, my brother-in-law, and in my husband's eyes and mannerisms, I see and love Lynn's mother!!!

To our mothers and to all the women in our lives who are mothers or will eventually be mothers and who holds destiny's future in their hands, Happy Mother's Day!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

COLOR IS GOOD

COLOR IS GOOD
Yesterday I went to the doctor
for my yearly physical.
My blood pressure was high ...
My cholesterol was high .........
I'd gained some weight, and I didn't feel so
hot. My doctor said eating right doesn't have
to be so complicated and it would solve my
phyiscal problems
He said: Just think in colors. Fill your plate
with bright colors. Try some
greens, oranges, reds,
maybe something yellow, etc.
So I went right home and ate an entire bowl of
And sure enough, I felt better immediately.
I never knew
eating right coule be so easy!!!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

... Of Good Report !!

I am happy to report a few things are happening with Lynn and I and in our family that will have a great impact on our lives, for the good mind you! :)

1) My sister, Linda, is coming for a visit the first week in June!!! I am so ExCiTeD to see her and to spend some time with her in Chicagoland. Linda and I, in our early, early years spent some time in the Evanston, IL area while our dad was attending Northwestern University. I think this may actually be the first time Linda has been back to the Chicago area since our family moved west to Utah.
I absolutely love living in Illinois! I never thought there was a better place to live other than Utah until I moved to Southern California. The warm winters, the Pacific Ocean, ski resorts if you wanted to really go skiing, the topography, and the people I met and grew to love helped me realize that living in California was the best place on earth to live, minus the earthquakes! ;)
After our time in California, Lynn and I moved back to Utah. Once again, I thought nothing could be so perfect for us as living in Utah. Family was close by, I met more friends that literally changed my life. I know nothing, nothing could be better than living in Utah. That is, until we moved to Illinois!

I was 3 or 3 1/2 years old when I left Illinois the first time, so the images and memories I have of Chicago/Evanston are pretty vague, with exception of a few family pictures. So, when Lynn and I moved to Aurora, IL, it was like a whole new world for me! I love the fact that we live close enough but far enough away from the big city life of Chicago. I love all the art, music, history, topography, forest preserves, the busy(ness), yet slow(ness) of life. The food around here is to die for! Chicago style pizza, hot dogs, whoopee pies, cheese cakes, popcorn, etc. I know I am now living in the most beautiful state in the nation, next to Utah, California, Arizona, Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, Idaho, etc. I can't wait to show off my adopted state and city to Linda!

2) My niece, Cori, and her husband, Jeff, received word that their new adopted son, Evan, now ten months old and living in South Korea with his foster family, will be joining their small family soon. Evan will be coming home to his older brother, Seth, who was also born in South Korea and who joined the Mohr family in November of 2008. The Korean adoption agency Cori and Jeff use provide a foster family for the child until they are twelve months old, and then they are presented to their adoption parents. My heart goes out to those generous mothers in South Korea who lovingly and with the utmost care take a son or daughter into their home for twelve months knowing they will be giving them up to their future mother and father within a year. * The pictures of Evan, Seth, Cori & Jeff are part of the Mohr's family photo collection. Seth and now Evan are truly lucky and blessed to have Cori and Jeff as their parents. Evan will be joining the Mohr family and a whole host of grandmas, grandpas, aunts, uncles and cousins in just a few short months!!! Welcome to the family, Evan!!! We LOVE You Already!

3) I have another niece, Kristi, who in July will be having her second son. Kristi and Andrew's first son was born on the same day in November (2007) as Seth. Miracles of miracles ... two boys (Luke & Seth) ... separated by oceans and countries are now bound together as a family ** cousins ** in every way!! Luke had some health problems when he was born. There were times we didn't know if he would make it. But, Luke is a fighter!!! He has shown us all so much grace and patience. He is truly a miracle in every way. I do not live close enough to put my arms around Luke, nor his mom and dad, but Kristi and Andrew generously share with family and friends pictures of their family so we can stay up-to-date on their young but growing family. Luke and his baby brother are fortunate and blessed to have doting parents who love them. Luke and his brother will have tons of family members they can turn to and who will love them in every way possible. I am in awe of how wonderful Kristi and Cori are as mothers. They are amazing mothers raising their sons to be God fearing and loving individuals who will bless everyone's life they come in contact with.

4) Within the next few months, Lynn and I will have five nieces and nephews graduating from college. Three nieces will graduate from high school and head off into a world of endless possibilities and adventures. Carrie, our niece, received a mission call to Washington DC (South) and will leave for the training center on June 30th. We have another nephew who is serving a church mission in the South Africa region. Four nephews have returned from serving the Lord on missions.

5) Our brother-in-law will be returning home from Iraq, hopefully by Mother's Day, safe and sound!

Lynn and I are truly blessed to have such a wonderful and extraordinary siblings, parents, nephews and nieces!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

March 6, 2010, Chicago!

Even though we are in the month of April, I would be remiss if I didn't mention that on March 6, 2010, Lynn and I found ourselves in downtown Chicago. I DO LOVE CHICAGO! To me, Chicago is a breathtakingly beautiful and vibrant city. I can and do see a picture taking moment everywhere much to Lynn's chagrin! ;o) I love Chicago's skyline, the architectural genus that went into the skyscrapers, every structural and colorful facade, and even the parks are picturesque. Chicago has never lost sight of its true gem, Lake Michigan's sea front.

Here are just a few pictures from our glorious day in March!



-Shelly

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Our Pride and Joy! :)

Lynn and I have not been blessed with sons or daughter of our own; however, Lynn and I have been a mom and dad to three cats.

Patches, our black and white short hair cat, was the first to leave us. Patches died before we left Utah in 2007 of liver failure. We brought him (or Patches brought himself) into our lives as a feral cat, which means Patches had no or very little human contact for the first few months of his life. Many of his feline insecurities and shyness surfaced because of those early conditions. But, we loved Patches with all of our hearts and I am sure Patches in his own way loved us as well. Lynn and I cried for weeks after Patches died and still find ourselves reminiscing about many of his antics that made us laugh and find ourselves inadvertently calling one of our other cats, Patches. (In a multi sibling household, who has never been called the name of their brother or sister?)

Maxwell is the old wise cat of the bunch. Max is the elder of our little family unit. He continues to show us various sides of himself, which makes us laugh and which also makes us cry. Max has always been flexible to change and this characteristic has made our house happy and peaceful. Max loves the car and actually enjoys car rides. Poor Max was not happy when we moved to Illinois. He had 3 of his canine teeth removed and now resembles Snaggle Pus, the cartoon cat w/one lonely canine. - - Max has missed Utah and his private backyard. Max has settled quietly and patiently into his life in Illinois. We have a porch that is high off the ground which Max likes to stretch out on and relax. Max is nearing his 16th year. Lynn and I know we will not have Max with us much longer; so, we will enjoy the time we do have with him for as long as we can!!!!

Lynn and I knew before Patches died that we would be moving to another state. With Patches gone we didn't feel like we could move to a new state, a new house for Max that had no familiar surroundings, without getting another cat. Lynn and I went to the Humane Society and purchased a small black female kitten who we named Citty Cat (CC for short). Immediately CC brought spunk and a new surge of energy into our home. CC has gone to great length to groom us all. She wants to lick us clean much to Max's horror and loud piercing objections. CC amuses us every day. We are thrilled CC is part of our two and four-legged household.

Max and CC both have very unique characteristics and antics. Max all of a sudden has decided that he no longer wants to drink out of their water dish; Instead, Max wants to drink out of the bath tub faucet. Just a trickle of water and he is happy! CC loves romping in the snow on our deck. Here are small video clips of our dependents in action.



-Shelly

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Tender Mercies of God

In our church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saint, we believe deeply and with all of our hearts in Jesus Christ, our Savior, and the Father of us all, our Heavenly Father.

As we are coming upon the Easter Season, it is a hallowed and special time for me. This is a time when I think of the inhumanity of man and also the charity and love of my Savior.

I know with all of my heart that Jesus is indeed the very Christ, the literal Son of our Eternal Father in Heaven, the one who was referred to as Jehovah in the Old Testament. Our Savior left his glorious realm on high to come to this earth to gain a physical body of flesh and bones. How else could the Savior know how to succor His flock if He had not walked the same journey? How would he know how to heal my wounded spirit at night if He had not also sought guidance through prayer to our Father in Heaven? How else would He know about pain, my afflictions, how it feels to lose someone through the separation of death unless He had walked that same lonely pathway as well? Would He know what it feels like to be hungry unless He, who was the creator of this earth, hungry himself?

I love to read the stories of Jesus in the New Testament. I close my eyes and I am there with the shepherds as the glories of the heavens were opened to them and angels proclaimed the birth of Jesus Christ. I am there in my mind as the Savior feeds the hungry and I listen in rapture and spiritual delight to his Sermon on the Mount. I see His compassion and majesty as He heals a leper and restores eyesight to the blind. I am struggling with the apostles as they try to keep their boat afloat only to see the Savior rebuke the rough waters and the waters are still. I was also there on that crucial night when He broke bread and provided wine for what is known as the Last Supper and as He, the Lord of Lords, humbled himself as a servant and washed and dried the dusty feet of each apostle. I anguished with Him as our Savior, the King of Kings, the Lord over Heaven and Earth, committed Himself unto will of God and into the hands of evil men, who did horrendous and horrible things to our Savior. I wept with the women and our Savior's dear friends as His spirit left His body on the bloody cross at Calvary. I weep with joy and gladness because I was there with Mary, with Peter, John, Thomas, and all the other apostles of our Lord and Savior, when He appeared to them as a resurrected being and loosened the bands of death.

I know because of the Savior's atonement, His resurrection, along with His perfect life, that I will be resurrected as well. It is my earthly conduct that will determine if I live with Him, my Heavenly Father, along with my family and friends after I die in a state of never ending happiness.

On this brilliant Easter Season, I raise my voice with the Savior's prophets and apostles now and then, I KNOW MY SAVIOR LIVES!

-Shelly

Monday, March 29, 2010

10 Ways to Use Clear Nail Polish You Might Never Have Guessed!!!

Here is another informative and useful article with one of my favorite inventions ever, clear nail polish!!!!!!

'10 Ways to Use Clear Nail Polish You Might Never Have Guessed

We all know that clear nail polish is a great finishing coat for a manicure, and I'd guess that most have even heard that it can be used to keep a run in a panty hose from spreading, but there are scores of other uses for the stuff in and around your home. Some of the most surprising tricks - for everything from waterproofing matches to threading needles - are as follows:

Making jewelry last. To extend the life of costume jewelry and to keep it looking bright and glossy, give beads a thin layer of polish. It helps prevent fading and tarnishing.

Sealing envelopes. In lieu of licking envelope flaps to seal them (not only can this be ineffective, but does anyone find that taste as gross as I do?) dab on a little polish to keep them glued nice and tight.

Threading needles. Rather than get frustrated when attempting to thread a needle, run the cut side of the thread through the polish brush. Roll the thread between your fingers a couple of times; the polish will dry immediately and the thread becomes stiffer (and much more easy to get through the eye of the needle).

Keeping belt buckles pristine. To ensure belt buckles stay bright and shiny, shellac them with a coat of polish to prevent oxidation.

Securing buttons. Brush on a dollop of polish in the center of your buttons to keep the threads from coming undone. If you have a sweater or dress with pearly buttons, give the whole thing a coat of polish to keep them luminous.

Fixing window screens or shades. If you have a tear in a window shade or screen, paint on some polish to keep it from worsening.

Waterproofing matches. As any camper can attest, there are bigger drags than a box of soggy matches. To waterproof them, paint the flammable tips with polish.

Wood floor repairs. A bit of clear polish is fantastic to touch-up minor dents and little scuffs on wood floors.

Avoiding rust stains. You know those rust rings that form on your tub is you leave shaving cream in the shower? Just varnish the underside of the can with a little polish to keep the metal from scraping.

Shoelace protector. To stop shoelaces from unraveling and fraying, dip the ends in clear polish."

by: Emily Hsieh, Shine Staff - March 18, 2010

One thing this article did not mention that I know clear nail polish is good for is car/truck windshield repair.  When a rock from a moving vehicle cracks your windshield, immediately dab the chip (the outside  window) with clear nail polish. Similar to the nylon logic, this will keep the chip from growing and cracking through your windshield.

CLEAR NAIL POLISH IS MY FRIEND!!! 

-Shelly

The Dos and Don'ts of Loading Your Dishwasher

:o)  Hmmmmmm!  Loading a dishwasher should be as simple as, say ... 'counting pennies'.  Unfortunately in this techno-savvy world, we (or at least I am) are becoming too self reliant on doing things fast and haphazardly. For this entry I thought I'd move into a whole new direction and focus my attention on an article I read about the 'Dos' and 'Don'ts' of dishwasher protocol. - - I don't know how many times I'll go to unload my dishwasher only to find food still caked on dishes or chunks of tomatoes stuck in and on the silverware. The article I'm referring to was written by Emily Hsieh, Shin Staff on March 16, 2010, I would just like to copy it, word for word' for any other dishwasher challenged individual.

"The dos and don'ts of loading your dishwasher

My husband and I are divided when it comes to loading the dishwasher. My methodology is aimed at space efficiency.  I line up all the plates on one side, all the cups on the other, and anything random/big in the middle. His technique, or lack of, is completely haphazard - he just throws things in the machine in the first empty spot he sees (which means only about half as many dishes fit). And as it turns out, as was reported in The New York Times, there is actually a science to this, and my approach could use some finessing too.  Here are some pointers from the Consumer Reports Home and Garden Blog to help your dishwasher perform at its best, and to prevent your dishes from chipping:
  1. Load large items at the sides and back of the dishwasher, so that they don't block water and detergent from reach other dishes.
  2. Place the dirtier side of dishes toward the ccenter of the machine to provide more exposure to the spray. Don't let dishes or utnesils nest, or rest side vy side, which can prevent water from reaching all surfaces.
  3. Use the top rack for plastic and delicate items that are dishwasher safe.
  4. Rest glassware on prongs to prevent breakage. And to prevent chipping, make sure that china, crystal, and stemware don't touch each other. Don't machine-wash brass, bronze, cast iron, disposable plastics, gold colored flatware, gold-leaf china, hollow-handle knives, pewter, tin, or anything made of wood or with a wood handle.
  5. Load silverware with handles down but place knives with the handles up. If your dishwasher as an open basket, mix spoons, forks, and knives to prevent them from sticking together.
  6. Place items with baked-on food facedown and toward the sprayer in the bottom rack."
'Shine on' clean and sparkling dishes and utensils!!!

-Shelly

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Life On A Train

I was sent this thoughtful piece by my good friend, Deyon! I hope it will make you stop and think of what is important to you like it has me.
 * * * * * *
     "A while back, I read a very interesting book that compared life to a train ride or a series of train rides.
     Life is like a train ride, it read. We get on. We ride. We get off. We get back on and ride some more. There are accidents and there are delays. At certain stops there are surprises. Some of these will translate into great moments of joy, some will result in profound sorrow.
     When we are born and we first board the train, we meet people whom we think will be with us for the entire journey. Those people are our parents! Sadly, this is far from the truth. Our parents are with us for as long as we absolutely need them. They too have journeys they must complete. We live on with the memories of their love, affection, friendship, guidance and their ever presence.
     There are others who board the train and who eventually become very important to us, in turn. These people are our brothers, sisters, friends and acquaintances, whom we will learn to love, and cherish.
     Some people consider their journey like a jaunty tour. They will just go merrily along. Others, will encounter many upsets, tears, losses on their journey.  Others still, will linger on to offer a helping hand to anyone in need.
     Some people on the train will leave an everlasting impression when they get off. Some will get off and on so quickly, they will scarcely leave a sign that they ever traveled along with you or ever crossed your path.
     We will sometimes be upset that some passengers, whom we love, will choose to sit in another compartment and leave us to travel on our own. Then again, there's nothing that says we can't seek them out anyway. Nevertheless, once sought out and found, we may not even be able to sit next to them because that seat will have already been taken.
    That's okay ... Everyone's journey will be filled with hopes, dreams, challenges, setbacks and goodbyes. We must strive to make the best of it ... no matter what.
     We must constantly strive to understand our travel companions and look for the best in everyone.
     Remember that at any moment during our journey, any one of our travel compaions can have a weak moment and be in need of our help.
     We too may vacillate or hesitate, even trip ... hopefully we can count on someone being there to be supportive and understanding.
     The biggest mystery of our journey is that we don't know when our last stop will come.  Neither do we know when our travel companions will make their last stop .. not even those sitting next to us.
     Personally, I know I'll be sad to make my final stop ... I'm sure of it!
     My separation from all those friends and acquaintances I made during the train ride will be painful. Leaving all those I'm close to will be a sad thing. But then again, I'm certain that one day I'll get to the main station only to meet up with everyone else. They'll all be carrying their baggage ... most of which they didn't have when they first got on this train. I'll be glad to see them again. I'll also be glad to have contributed to their baggage ... and to have enriched their lives, just as much as they will have contributed to my baggage and enriched my life.
     We're all on this train ride together. Above all, we should try to strive to make the ride as pleasant and memorable as we can, right up until we each make the final stop and leave the train for the last time."
- Author: Unknown

Shelly

A Wonderful Opportunity


A wonderful and humble opportunity has presented itself to us.  Lynn and I, on Friday, were asked to be Ordinance Workers at the Chicago Temple, for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  We are extremely excited and nervous to undertake this sacred and holy calling in the House of The Lord.  Once a week (every Friday from 12:30-6:30pm) and without pay, we will dedicate our time by serving God and our fellowmen and to do that service in His House is an honor and a blessing.

-Shelly

Sunday, March 21, 2010

My First!!!

On Tuesday (Mar 16, 2010), I had my first colonoscopy.  Oh my goodness! To prep for the procedure, my diet on Monday was restricted to clear liquids.  For the day, I had to drink 36 oz of clear liquid or more.  I mixed my water intake up with apple juice and white grape juice.  I did have some light colored jello during the day, which of course was a pure delight.  Then around 6:00pm on Monday I had to drink a not-so-fun 36 oz. liquid cocktail (9 oz. every 15 minutes until the drink mixture was gone).  Along with the liquid concoction, I had to drink an additional 6 oz of clear liquid to stay hydrated because about 30 minutes after finishing the drink mixture all my bowls started loosening.  I was on the bathroom throne for over 2 hours literally flushing out my large and small intestines.  (The picture I'm creating doesn't look pretty, does it!) Even after this, I still had to continue drinking clear liquids.  I want you to know during the night hours my whole abdominal area felt like it was being plummeted by ping pong balls and it was making horrendous sounds that would make even a dinosaur jealous.

Tuesday morning (the morning of my procedure) I had to get up at 4am to once again down the nasty 32 oz liquid (9 oz every 15 minutes until the mixture was gone) finishing each segment up with another 6 oz glass of water.  I am literally floating on water by this time.  I couldn't believe a person could drink so much and not drowned.  I couldn't eat or drink anything after 5:15am until after the colonoscopy.  What an ordeal!!!

Lynn and I arrived at Mercy and met with a countless number of medical aides and nurses and then met Dr. Seigfried for the first time.  Dr. Seigfried took his time to explain to me, and to Lynn, what the procedure involved.  What they would do to me in the surgical room, the type of anesthesia he would use, if I had any questions, etc?  Even if I had wanted to make a mad dash for the door, an IV was in my hand and I was in the lovely hospital gown attire, so there was no way out, I was in too deep already.

Lynn kept assuring me for weeks that the worst part of a colonoscopy was the prep time.  Lynn had already endured 2 colonoscopies, so he was my expert witness.  I still was not convinced that the prep was the worst part of the procedure as the nurses were wheeling my bed (w/me in it) down the long hallway to the surgical center.  Is it just me or are all hospital corridors extra long when being wheeled to surgical centers? In the surgical center, I was given oxygen and the nurses said I wouldn't be strapped down like I was during my other operations, so I was pretty relieved about that.  The propophol they were using was like an off and on switch.  On, I was out like a light. Off, I was (somewhat) awake.  The last thing I remember in the surgical center was a nurse giving me oxygen and another kind lady saying, 'it's time to sleep!" and that is all I really remember except when my dazed and somewhat bleary eyes started to focus on Lynn!  :)

I can't remember much after the 'it's time to sleep!" stage and until I noticed Lynn; however, Lynn says after the procedure he could hear me talking up a storm all the way down the hall, thanking the nurses (I'm glad I was thanking them ...) for helping me and chatting about everything.  I can't remember any of this conversation.  I do not remember anything from the surgical completion to about 30 minutes later when I became fully conscious of my surroundings.  Dr. Seigfried arrived after I was awake to talk and show me the results of my colonoscopy. -- Prognosis:  Me = Good, Colon = Excellent, Next Visit = 5 years!  :)  Dr. Seigfried did not have to remove any polyps, which meant my diet would not be restrictive.  I was cautioned though to eat light during the next 24 hours.

I am somewhat relieved that my colon came out with flying colors.  There are so many real life horror stories of men and women dying of colon cancer.  One of the major news anchors, Katie Couric's, husband died quite young, due to colon cancer.  Katie has been trying to raise the publics' consciousness to the hazards of colon cancer and how to prevent it. 

I came home from my colonoscopy with pictures, 28 glossy colored pictures of my intestines and colon.  I'm not exactly sure what I'm going to do with all of these pictures.  When Lynn had his 2 colonoscopies, he came home with 2-8x10 sheets of 4 colonoscopy pictures, 8 pictures altogether.  My pictures are rather small, but I still have 28 pictures!!  What am I to do with 28 pictures from my colonoscopy? Should I cut them up and send a picture of my colonoscopy w/each Christmas card or should I turn them into framed art pieces and hang them on our wall?  To save all of you the thought of getting one of my highly valued photos or for the mad rush to our house to see the art exhibit, I decided to post the colonoscopy pictures here on our blog.  That way no one will feel deprived or feel 'unloved' for not receiving a photo.  You can see the pictures for yourself and on your own timetable!  Now, if there is one particular photograph that you'd love to have hanging around your house or in your wallet, just let me know.  I will pop it into the mail for you.  :)

Speaking of colonoscopies!!!  If you are over 50 and haven't had one, please do so.  If your family has a medical history of colon or adnominal cancer or if you are young and are worried about your health, get a colonoscopy.  It is a relief to you, to your spouse, to your children and those who love you! Lynn was right.  The preparation for the colonoscopy was the pits, the procedure itself was a cinch!

* I hope you enjoy the pictures!!!!

-Shelly

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Miracle of Miracles

What are the lyrics from the musical, "Fiddler on the Roof", "Wonders of wonders, miracles of miracles ..."?  I can raise my voice to the top of the hills and say this week, "I WAS A RECIPIENT of one of God's many astounding and loving miracles.

On February 26th, I sent a Chicago care package to my friend, Ethel Roberg, who lives in Salt Lake City (UT).  I told Ethel to keep an eye out for the package.   Since a few weeks had already passed by since we sent the box, and I had not heard anything from Ethel, the UPS information slip was thrown away only to find out that Ethel had not received the package.  I obtained another tracking slip with the help of our UPS store, which indicated the dates, along with the various location stops the box had took before it reached it's final destination. 

Ethel informed me that she had already been scouring the outside of her property for weeks, hoping to find the package.  I knew the box was delivered on the porch of her house since that is what was on the tracking slip.  During more conversations with Ethel, I found out the information I had on her address was incorrect.  I was sending mail to the wrong address!  All the mail to Ethel over two plus years was never delivered to her or sent back to me, so I had assumed Ethel was receiving our mail. {This should have been my first clue there was a problem since Ethel will always acknowledge any type of correspondence or act of kindness by saying, thank you.}  All of the cards and letters for Ethel were in some gigantic black vortex hole, and now the package was gone.

This week Ethel wanted to see where the package and all of her mail (from me) was being delivered.  To her astonishment, it was not a residential residence I was sending mail to, instead it was a vacant lot.  Ethel and her husband did find a house next to the lot where the address numbers were missing and the address was a digit off.  Ethel thought the UPS driver might have delivered it to that house by mistake.  Even in error, the home Ethel and her husband were looking at didn't look safe or lived in.  Ethel was apprehensive as she walked up to the porch and around to the back, looking for the package.  No box. Finally, Ethel's husband told her to ring the bell.  Ringing the bell was the last thing Ethel wanted to do, but she did.  Do you know what Ethel found in the doorway? The package!!! :-) The box was lodged between the screen door and the wooden door.  Isn't that something!!!!

Ethel was prompted by the Spirit to find the residence I was sending her mail to; and then, Ethel listened to her husband.  Ethel's husband listened to the Holy Ghost!

This was not a desperate situation, heralded by trumpets, nor was it earth shattering; but  it was one more witness to me of God's love.  Our problems, large or small, are significant to God if it is important to us.  God does hear and answer our prayers, even when it is as simple and insignificant as a care package.

-Shelly