Halloween- Candied Apples- Frankenstein  10 layers of face paint- Hokus Pokus- Apple Cider- Lots of screams and shrills- Witches- CHOCOLATE- Pumpkin Carving and Roasted Pumpkin Seeds- Goblins  Charlie Brown and the Great Pumpkin- Dry ice smoke- Trick or Treats- Laughter- Family- Memories. I love this time of year: 1) because it's the beginning of the Holiday season and 2) because of all the fun traditions that we have. I love seeing little kids dressed up in little costumes and seeing the excitement in their eyes when they fill their pillow cases and pumpkin bags full of candy. I love to stick my hands into a cold ooey gooey pumpkin and scoop out the guts. I love the spices and the candles. I just love it all!!!!! But lets face it- this is the time of year that we all let our belt buckles out a hole or two so that we can enjoy just one more slice of apple pie or one more sip of mint hot coco in the mornings, the chocolate from our kids candy baskets, the pumpkin and ghost shaped sugar cookies and the spiced nuts. Oh it's just all too good to give up!!!! So to make it possible for us to keep eating these delectable goodies all we need to do is counteract all those calories and sugars with a fun work out. But let's face it who ever thinks about working out around Halloween? I know I sure dont! But I came across this cute little Halloween inspired work out that we can all do at home. So go put on some comfy work out cloths or maybe even your Halloween costume  turn on some Monster Mash and Thriller and join me in the fun workout!!!!
So now when you eat one of your sons Reese's or your daughter gives you an almond joy because she doesnt like the coconut you wont feel so bad eating it because have already creeped away the calories!!!!!
HaPpY hAlLoWeEn!!!!!
" I believe that as soon as the babies heart starts beating the spirit has entered the womb...... and this is when the real connection between a mother and child begins." Today I wanted to talk about the wonderful opportunity that as women we get, and that is to be effective mother's to God's most beloved children. I interviewed my own mother on the connections she had with her babies. She talked about how she started to love the child when she first found out she was pregnant, she said that when she found out she was so overwhelmed with excitement and a great deal of love for our Heavenly Father because he was entrusting one of his choice spirits in her to raise, care and nourish. My mom talked about how she loved that little spirit far more than words could ever describe as soon as she found out she was pregnant. Her favorite part of being pregnant was when the baby would move, she talked about how strong of a bond a mother can have with her baby just by feeling in moving around. All through this interview my mom kept saying "I just dont know how to describe it." And that is the beauty of this whole process- its so wonderful that words cant describe it. She also talked a lot about how spiritual this nine months can be for a mother, it's a time when you can really grow close to the babies spirit before he/she is even born. 

     It has been said for centuries that there is no greater pain on this earth than the pain a mother feels when going through birth. You have just spent nine months with your skin and in sides stretch and being smushed, you have doubled in jean size, you are sick throwing up and with headaches, you have to give up some of your favorite foods and activities, your back hurts, your stomach itches, you are tired yet cant sleep, you are in much pain and you are emotional all the time. Then at the time of birth your body is stretching again, you are loosing blood, water and literally risking your life for this babies. There is tears, blood, sweat, squeezing of the hands and a whole lot of screaming.... Yet every mother will tell you its all worth it. " Physically and emotionally it is very hard to be pregnant and give birth but as soon as you hold that child all the pain and suffering goes away because you are so caught up in your new baby and all that excitement  You forget it all.... At first sight, because I already loved you, now that I was holding you the excitement was over powering and that wait was suddenly all worth it. It was pure joy. At that moment you feel like you are holding your whole world . You feel this strong attachment, love, dedication and nothing else could ever compare to that moment.... you now feel complete and complete joy...." 

"I knew that I knew each of my children in heaven and we loved each other. I know that we were close and were placed in the same family for a purpose. When I each of my children were placed in my arms for the first time and I got my first glance I felt that very special connection again and I feel like I already knew everything about each of you. You all are the greatest gift this life has to offer besides the Atonement. I felt an overwhelming feeling that my father trusted me enough to care for his precious spirits, I felt an immense amount of love for my Father in heaven..... Pregnancy and giving birth to each and ever one of my children was just one miracle right after another, and you still are.."   (Quoted from my Mommy)
The significance of mother's influence is first grounded in the relationship she forms with her child. because motherhood is part of a woman's divine identity, her role as mother is defined by a relationship more than a set of tasks

Quoted from Successful Marriages and Families : Proclamation Principles and Research Perspectives. Chapter 12 Mothers as Nurturers
"The moment a child is born, the mother is also born. The woman existed but the mother, never. A mother is something absolutely new."


     Prophets have told us time and time again that being a mother is one of the most note-worthy things that a woman can do in this life. And what an amazing responsibility that is :) I think the bond between a mother and a child is so remarkable. I know that my mom is my very bestest friend and its because she has always been there for me and loved me through it all. I think its important for women to remember the great gifts God has placed in our lives (AKA our children) and to reflect back on those precious first hours of our children's lives. Remember who you are and remember who you are to your children- because to them you are their world!
     Audrey Hepburn said that in all her life she has discovered that the women she found were most happy were the prettiest ones. Now some say that only the girls that are pretty are ever happy- but what's so wrong with believing that you are one of those girls? As women we typically want to shy away from the compliments and we really never go around with the attitude that "oh I look so pretty today." But Audrey Hepburn, a woman who has been noted for years for her beauty and grace said herself that those who are the happiest are the ones who know they are pretty. When we can walk out that front door every day with that solid belief that we are all beautiful in our own way we truly do shine in ways that can not be faked.  
     One way you can realize our own beauty could be by pampering yourself and giving back to your body. It's proven that a woman that treats her body right and pampers herself is more relaxed, has less wrinkles and dark circles under our eyes (now dont we all want that) as well as has more confidence in her own skin.  Who doesnt like a little pampering, some cucumbers, green face masks, wax baths for the hands, scalp and back massages and wonderful foot baths. I know I DEFIANTLY LOVE ALL OF THIS!!!!!!! I love me some good old home spa nights and self pamperings. One night after you have put all the kids to bed, or on a Sunday afternoon when your husband could play with the kids for an hour or two take the time to pamper yourself and become connected with your inner beauteous self!!!!!  Here are a few tips to consider:
Cucumbers- it has long been said that cucumbers are a refreshing veggie that has the magical powers to reduce the swelling around the eyes as well as lessen the dark circles. It also soothes and smoothes (totally made that word up but when you say the two together it just sounds better :) the skin around the eyes. You could literally do this trick while the kids are at school for 10-15 minutes or while laying in bed at night before you fall asleep.
Candles: When you decide to give yourself a me night (or even if you do this in the middle of the day for 25 minutes while the kids are at school) create a fun relaxing environment. But on some good tunes- like Michael Bubble his voice is pampering enough for me!!!!! Dim the lights to ease the stress on the eyes, light some yummy smelling candles. This is relaxing because one it appeals to your smelling senses and makes you feel happy. And two is romantic and soothing.  Lets face it its just fun to be in a candle lit room every once in a while.

Take a bubble bath!!!!- LOVE TO DO THIS!!!! Did you know that something as simple as a bubble bath is beneficial to both your mental and physical health???? Bet'cha didn't .... dont feel bad I just found this out. Taking a bubble bath is very soothing to the skin- it leaves your skin very smooth and soft (like a baby's behind) as well as creates an easier surface to exfoliate. It also pulls all of your focus on yourself. It's not healthy to only think about yourself every second of the day but neither is it good to neglect yourself all the time. Take this time to really relax, soften your skin, get pruney fingers and focus on YOU!!!!!
     Comb your hair- now either you could comb your own hair and play with it or you could teach your little girls what gentle is and feels like and then let them practice being gentle with your hair. For some odd reason playing with your hair feels so good and is a great stress reliever.
     Living a well balanced life doesnt just mean staying on top of things, being organized, being happy and checking off every box on your list for that day- it also means focusing on you. When I was in the hospital being treated for depression I learned about the "Me Pie" apparently there are certain things that I need to have in my day to day routines to stay mentally and physically healthy. The doctor drew a circle and called it "My Daily Pie" one by one he sectioned off pieces of my pie for school, homework, family, church, work, chores, friends, etc. But when he was done there was a pretty large chunk left. I asked him what that was for and he said "This part of the pie is for you to enjoy" (no pun intended) He talked about how humans become so involved in work, school, activities and others that we dont spend time working on ourselves and relaxing. We work work work and save nothing for ourselves leaving us mentally, physically, spiritually and emotionally drained. This causes stress, lack of sleep, frustration, loss of temper, and lots of break downs. We need to enjoy the pie and not just give it all out- I mean hey it is our pie!!!! This could include reading a good book, laughing with a friend, doing yoga, cooking, drawing, dribbling a basketball or running a mile or two. Or maybe its enjoying a whole chocolate bar all to ourselves or doing a little home pampering :) 
     Your pie is so yummy and you have shared it with so many that have loved partaking of your sweetness- dont forget to take some of your pie today..... because what you have to offer truly is delicious :)
     When it is crisp, snow is falling, the Christmas music is playing in October you know it's time to start breaking out the yummy soup recipes. And while you're at it- get big bread rolls from the store, or make them homemade and eat your soup in a bread bowl!!!! (So yummy)

      One day I was surfing the internet for new recipes and I just happened to run across this recipe for a Copy Cat Panera Bread Broccoli Cheddar Cheese soup and I was like- THERE'S NO WAY IM PASSING THIS UP!!!!! So last Wednesday I made it. Let me say YUM!!!!!!
This soup is so creamy and yummy and delicious and delectable and scrumptious and just down right good.

(This recipe serves about 5-6)
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1/4 cup flour (sift the flower before so that there are no clumps)
  • 2 cups half-and-half ( or skim milk)
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 pound fresh broccoli ( florets only)
  • 1 cup carrots, julienne
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 8 ounces grated cheddar cheese

  1. Saute onions in a little butter in a small pan – set aside. You are going to want to chop your onions into a medium-small dice.
  2. In a large stockpot melt butter. Add flour and mix for 3 minutes. Make sure to add your flower a little at a time stirring in- you want this to be a smooth as possible (remember this is the base for your soup you dont want a clumpy floury soup base)
  3. Slowly add half- half – mixing the entire time. To make this soup stretch a little more I added 1/2 of water after the half and half. (At this point I also added a little dried basil to my mix just for extra flavor and because I like basil :)
  4. Slowly add chicken stock- mixing the entire time. I personally didnt use like a chicken stock, I used that chicken broth powder mix stuff you get in the little glass jars. I mixed up 3 cups of warm water with 3 teaspoons of chicken broth powder then added that. (in case you havent noticed, I really do like to not follow instructions) You want to make sure that you stir this in completely and that your stock/broth is not separating from the flour and milk mixture
  5. Let simmer on low for 20 minutes. This is when the yumminess starts to happen and your soup base will start getting really good 
  6. Add broccoli, carrots; onions and cook on low for 25 minutes. I added extra broccoli because I love broccoli and wanted to really make this soup stretch. I also used about the top half of the stems of the broccoli but chopped them up small. I am def. not a waster when it comes to food and I like to use as much of the vegetable that I can.
  7. Season with salt, pepper; nutmeg. (the nutmeg is so so yummy :)
  8. Place soup in a blender or use an immersion blender and puree. (I didn't do this step because I like more chunky veggies in my soup generally, but I did dice my veggies pretty small so I wouldn't really have needed to blend it anyways)
  9. Heat soup over low heat and add cheese and mix till melted.
  10. Serve ( hopefully in a bread bowl) and Enjoy 

When I did this I did the recipe 1 1/2 times and made a large pot of this thinking it would be my lunch for the rest of the week. NOPE!!!!! Didnt even last that night!. My roommates and I cleaned that pan. I am totally not lying to you when I say this recipe is GOLDEN!!!!! You will love it just as much as my roomma
     In the Bible there is a story of a woman who is not named, but is known simply as a great woman. The story goes something like this: Elisha was a prophet of the Lord. Every time he visited the city Shunem, he would pass by the home of a great woman who would offer him bread. One day this great woman said to her husband. "Behold now, I perceive that this is an holy man of God, which passeth by us continually" (2 Kings 4:9) 

     Right away we learn two things about this woman. First- she knew that Elisha was a holy man. Second- he came to her house continually. So, if we want to be known as a great woman, what must we do? Recognize the prophet today as a holy man and invite him into our house continually. Now, most likely the prophet will not visit your home. But when we listen to general conference and read the Ensign and New Era , he is visiting our home.

     The story goes on to tell how she made a place for Elisha to stay in her home and she served him This woman was happy to serve without a reward. I find it fitting that the identity of the woman who performed quiet acts of kindness remains a secret today. We know her story, but we are never told her name. She is known simply as "a great woman."

     How can we be considered "great women" today? In 3 Nephi 12:16 we read"Therefore let your light so shine before this people, that they man see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven." Often the greatest acts of service you will perform will go noticed by the world. Sometimes you may even serve someone in a way that leaves them wondering who you are. In those moments you will be remembered simply as a great woman, and I have learned that this is the best title you could ever hope to receive in this life. One of the greatest lessons in this scripture story is for us to realize that the woman did the best she could with what she already had. She gave what she could, We can do the same thing. A great woman is someone who recognizes the need of another- whatever that need may be- and does something about it. Perhaps someone is having a bad day, and all they need is someone who is willing to listen. Saying hi to someone in the hall or at the grocery store are ways to serve silently. Sometimes the greatest service comes from someone who is simply willing to be a true friend- even to those they do not know.
"There are hearts to gladden..... kind words to say....... gifts to be given....... deeds to be done."
                       -Thomas S. Monson-

"The path of a good woman is indeed strewn with flowers; but they rise behind her steps, not before them."
                            - John Ruskin-
Have you done any good in the world today?
What have you done today that will recognize you as a "great woman"?
     For those who know me really well, knew this post was going to come eventually..... I AM OBSESSED!!!!!  Senior year of High School I made friends with a girl named Kelsey, she had just moved up from Arizona (where she had lived all her life, so Seattle Area was quite a shock to her) About two and a half months into the school year we realized that our life's pretty much consisted of going to school going home doing homework and the occasional girl or movie nights- we NEEDED to get out and do something more with our lives. So I started looking around at what kind of activities were going on around the community that wouldn't cost a lot of money. There was a recently opened dance studio in town that was offering a free ZUMBA class on your first visit. We thought- what do we have to loose. We went and got hooked. Before we knew it we were going two times a week!!!!! As we were getting closer to summer I realized that I really do love ZUMBA and I didn't want to ever stop! So I looked into getting certified. July 22 2012 I flew down to Boise, ID stayed a few days with family and embarked on a 10 hour class of non-stop ZUMBA-ING by the end of that exhilarating and exhausting day I walked into the front door of my aunts house beaming smile and certificate in hand. 
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     I went home and taught a few classes here and there and then when I got to BYU-Idaho I auditioned to be a ZUMBA instructor on campus. I was so nervous!!!!! (OK I wont go into great detail about this but here is the funny story. When I auditioned they told me I would hear back with in a week if I got the position. I didn't hear back and got really discouraged. But tried to move on from that. The following Wednesday I went to bed around 10 pm and at 10:48 I got a phone call from an anonymous number, I was really contemplating not answering but I had a feeling that I should. Turns out, I had the job all along, they LOVED me when I auditioned, they had my email wrong and was emailing the wrong email the whole time giving me the logistics  That night I was actually scheduled to teach a class, and ton of people showed up but ME! So then she ran home found my application and called me immedietly. I now teach every Wednesday 7-7:50 pm and then every other Saturday from 10-11 am :)
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     So some of you may be asking what is ZUMBA- well it's pretty much an aerobic style of dancing. It is typically a 50-60 minute class where you get an interval workout (you bring your heart rate up high, then down and up high then down, you do toning and make sure you get a really good warm up in the beginning and stretch at the end) where you use all different styles of dance, usually it will have a Latin base (because that's where it originated from) but you also use hip hop, jazz, country, swing, waltz, ballet and so much more. ZUMBA is an exercise that anyone can do, you just have to be willing to let loose and have fun!!!!! ( I can promise you that when I started I never thought this would be something I would love because I am just not one to shake my booty and wiggle my hips in front of other people, but when you allow yourself to get into it, you really do have a lot of fun. I never have seen myself as a good dance or pretty- but when I do ZUMBA I feel like I can dance and I feel BEAUTIFUL!!!!! No joke, and I hear that from other women all the time. I also hear from women all the time about their amazing weight loss journey through ZUMBA- I personally lost 18 pounds from ZUMBA this last summer :) The philosophy of ZUMBA is Forget the workout join the party! 

                         Benefit's from 1 hour of ZUMBA:
1. You will burn somewhere around 400-600 calories in just 1 hour of dancing!!!!!
2. ZUMBA is sneaky- you will be working muscles without even realizing it. Like  waving your arms in the air- who would have though that it works your biceps, and if you just turn your arm down just a little bit you are now working your triceps. Or you are doing a slow shimmy to the side- did you realize you just did squats and worked your abs???? You wouldn't even realize any of this because you are too busy having fun dancing! Really you are getting a FULL body workout without even knowing- see totally sneaky!!!!!
3. The ZUMBA environment was created to be fun and inviting for EVERYONE, and when you are exercise while having fun- MAJOR EMOTIONAL BOOST!!!!!
4. ZUMBA instructors are trained to use as little words as possible to explain their moves, they have been taught to clap or use hand motions to direct you. This may be a little hard to pick up on first but slowly and surely you brain will start picking up on these moves and you will become more confident in following any instructor as well as in your own dancing abilities. This technique was designed to make the students less dependent on the instructor and more on their own amazing abilities.
5. "ZUMBA is considered a weight-bearing activity, like walking or running, which helps maintain and improve bone density. ZUMBA also includes warm-ups and cool-downs which help with flexibility, an important ingredient in injury prevention. Finally, ZUMBA dances provide intervals of intensity throughout the class time, which is an effective way to challenge muscles, build strength and increase endurance." (taken from livestrong.com)

These are really just a few of the many benefits of ZUMBA- but inst that enough to totally get you excited to join a class????
     These pictures make me laugh, and you know what even for an instructor like me, and someone who has been doing ZUMBA for a year- this is probably still true. but HEY at least you can get a good laugh at it. PLUS when you laugh while your heart is pumping and you are doing intense cardio it works your ABS like none other. No joke- I have a 4 pack just from doing ZUMBA yells and laughing so hard at myself.  This post was really just to inform you of a fun new work out that you could try. Really many women go into ZUMBA not expecting a good workout, come out thinking that was SO MUCH FUN and then wake up the next day and you can feel every muscle that you worked out. I hope that you will try ZUMBA and that you will love it just as much as I have :)
     Not too long ago Disney put out a short little youtube clip to girls from 1-99 pronouncing that we are all princesses. "The Disney 'I am a Princess' video is a celebration of what it truly means to be a Princess, today. To be brave. To be kind. To be generous and compassionate. Join Disney as we celebrate the Princess inside every young girl. Long may they reign!" 
     The first time I watched this video, it was when a friend shared it on Facebook, I seriously watched it twice and bawled both times.... OK I didn't actually bawl but I did shed a tear or two. I thought all the little girls were so adorable, I love the scene of the Dad and little girl dancing to the waltz in Beauty and the Beast, I love seeing young women of all ethnics and backgrounds pronouncing their heritage and standing up to their true identity. My question to you today is, can you stand up with these 5 and 16 year old girls and say "I am a princess?"

   "Who can find a virtuous woman? For her price is far above rubies."
                                   Proverbs 31:10

"Be loyal to the Royal within you, for you are the Daughter of a King."
                                   Harold B. Lee

"Wake up every morning and say, 'I am a child of royal birth.  My Father is king of heaven and earth.  My spirit was born on the courts on high. A child beloved, A Princess am I."

                                    Harold B. Lee
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      This weekend BYU-Idaho had a Masquerade Ball, my roommates Auri (middle) and Seva (right) went with me!!!!! We had such a blast!!!! (I personally enjoyed dressing up and taking goofy pictures more than I did the actual dance). At the dance there was a Big Band playing old classics and people were doing the waltz, fox trot, swing and other fancy dances. It really was a lot of fun watching :) But going to this dance and having so much fun made me think about what it is that makes us happy in life. I know for me it's when I am with people I love doing things that we love, seeing the smiles, hearing the laughter and making memories. I honestly love to just sit and watch people have a good time, I am sure this is something our Father in Heaven does daily. I'm positive that he sits on a cloud watching us enjoy our lives and over come trials smiling down on us, shedding a tear or two when he is especially proud of us. This weekend made me want to do a blog post on ways that we can be happy in our own lives. I was searching around the internet for a few things and just happened to come across this article entitled 10 Ways To Be Happy.... On Purpose. I thought this was absolutely perfect for my post today, and I am excited to share it with you :)

1. KNOW YOURSELF- How well do you know yourself? Do you know what makes you smiles, what makes you laugh, what creates that warm bubbly feeling inside your tummy, what makes you so giddy you just have to giggle and dance? Do you know where you come from and what great worth you hold inside of you? These are the kinds of things that we should each learn about ourselves because they are a key factor to our life's happiness. 
"Today you are you, that's truer than true. There is nobody else who is you-er than you."   
                            -Dr. Seuss
Go out and get to know the magnificent you that you are, OWN IT!!!!! Strut your stuff and let other's know you as well. You are a wonderful woman packed full of fun things just like Mary Poppins bag.... your job is to reach down inside and let your sparkles shine!

"Open your eyes and look within. Are you satisfied with the life you are living?"
                            -Bob Marley

The question we all got asked when we were little was “what do you want to be when you grow up?” Now the question is “WHO do you want to be when you grow up?” Think of the "ideal you" and start doing the things that your idealized self would be doing. It’s time to stop playing make-believe and to start taking action! Let’s DO this!!!

“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who’ll decide where to go…”
                           -Dr. Seuss

“I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations and you’re not in this world to live up to mine.”
                            -Bruce Lee

Always be true to yourself. When working towards becoming your idealized self it’s important not to lose sight of who you are in favor of who you think you should be. Don’t compromise your values, morals, or true personality. YOUR INDIVIDUALITY IS IMPORTANT!!!!!!

4. UNDERSTAND THAT YOU CAN ONLY CONTROL YOURSELF- My Great Grandmother Lutilda Pierce used to always quote "Accept what you can't change- Change what you can't accept- And pray for wisdom to know the difference."  We need to come to the realization that we can't control everything, we cant control the whether  our little 2 year old, the teacher who is grading your essay's or even the prices in the grocery store. But we can control our own self's and our attitude. If we have a hard time drawing that line between what we are in control of and what we are not in control of- PRAY to God and he will give you the wisdom that you desire. I promise- praying to God works every time :)

5. ACHIEVE BALANCE IN ALL THINGS- There is a little Yin and a little Yang in life; everything has it's opposite, and the key is finding the harmony between them. For example you must strike a balance between selfishness and selflessness. 

"If things start happening, don’t worry, don’t stew; just go right along and you’ll start happening too.”
                      -Dr. Seuss

Don't hold on to the past, don't hold on to the hurt, the fears, the tragic events of life or the rain from yesterday- turn your view out towards the rising sun and rise up with it. Go forth in life with the idea that each day is a new day, and you will make the most of every moment because you only get one chance.

"Love the life you live..... and live the life you love."
                  - Bob Marley
So many of us go around searching for the meaning of life or waiting for inspiration when really it's within ourselves and up to us- no one will do this for you! So..... GO OUT THERE AND FIND MEANING! GO BE INSPIRED!!!!

“There are two ways to live; you can live as if nothing is a miracle; you can live as if everything is a miracle”
                      -Albert Einstein
In a world that is based so much on comparing ourselves, gossiping  finding out what JLO wore to the party last night and what Jennifer said about Angelina Jolie; where we hear about shootings in high schools, and all the drama of politics we are often found drowning in all this garbage. It's time to pick yourself up and look for the positive. Life is too short to focus on PEOPLE magazine and what Obama said about Romney in the last debate. If you find it hard to focus on the positive, read your scriptures, pray and smile. If you cant find the positive God will let the positive find you- but you first must set your heart towards it.

“Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter won’t mind.”
                      -Dr. Seuss

The next time you go out mentally make a list of the different characteristics that you see in your friends, women at church and mother's at the elementary school where your kids go. Make a list of what gives you good energy, what builds you up, what reminds you of your inner beauty and your great worth- then gravitate to those women. We all have friends in life who seem to drag us down, and yes it is a worthy goal to want to bring them up, but we must not spend all our time with them because eventually our spirits will become tired and we will sink down to their level. When we spend time with people who are uplifting and participate in wholesome activities our spirits are able to rejuvenate and our lives will become more enriched.

“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”
                    -Martin Luther King Jr.

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving”
                   -Albert Einstein
     I challenge you to go through this list of 10 ways to be happy and see how many you can check off- once you have done that make it a goal to work on the rest. I promise that when you find happiness in your life, God will open up new doors in your life so that you can bless the lives of those around you and they can better bless you.
     In October of 2007 Sister Julie B. Beck, at the time president of the General Relief Society, gave an amazing talk to the women of the church, specifically the mothers. "In the Book of Mormon," she starts out, "we read about 2,000 exemplary young men who were exceedingly valiant, courageous, and strong. 'Yea they were men of truth and soberness, for they had been taught to keep the commandments of God and to walk uprightly before him.' (Alma 53:21) These faithful young men paid tribute to their mothers. They said, "Our mothers knew it" (Alma 56:48). I would suspect that the mothers of Captain Moroni, Mosiah, and the other great leaders also knew.

     The responsibility mothers have today has never required more vigilance. More than at any time in the history of the world, we need mothers who know. Children are being born into a world where they 'wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.' (Ephesians 6:12) However  mothers need not fear. When mothers know who they are and who God is and have made covenants with him, they will have great power and influence for good on their children.

Mother's who know are willing to choose God's way over their own because they know that "two people can do anything, just as long as one of them is God...."

     In Sister Beck's talk she goes over the seven things that a mother does when she knows......
SHE BEARS CHILDREN- there is eternal influence and power in motherhood.....
"...... the value women place on motherhood in this life and the attributes of motherhood they attain here will rise with them in the resurrection. Women who desire and work toward that blessing in this life are promised they will receive it for all eternity, and eternity is much, much longer than mortality. there is eternal influence and power in motherhood." In a Best of EFY I once attended one of the speakers talked about the importance of motherhood. He jokingly said "Without mother's we wouldn't be here." But as he went through his talk he got more serious and talked about how God hand picks each mother for her children. I thought that was so beautiful, but what really struck me was when he talked about the birth of a child. Now I cant really explain this as well as he did, but I will give it a try. He talked about how when a mother is giving birth to a child she is closest to being like Christ than anyone ever could be on this earth. Christ delivered us through blood, water,  sacrifice and a lot of pain but an overwhelming amount of love. That is exactly what a mother does when she brings a child into this life. She delivers that little child of Heaven through a lot of blood and water, she is sacrificing so much in her own life.... in some case the mother actually does give up her own life for the life of her child. There is a lot of pain in the process of delivery but in the end that pain doesn't matter because she has more love than anyone could possibly understand for that little child.

HONOR COVENANTS- these mothers have made and honor temple covenants....
"...... I have visited sacrament meetings in some of the poorest places on the earth where mothers have dressed with great care in their Sunday best despite walking for miles on dusty streets and using worn-out public transportation. They bring daughters in clean and ironed dresses with hair brushed to perfection; their sons wear white shirts and ties and have missionary haircuts. These mothers know they are going to sacrament meeting, where covenants are renewed. These mothers have made and honor temple covenants. They know that if they are not pointing their children to the temple, they are not pointing them toward desired eternal goals."
ARE NURTURERS- they create a climate for spiritual and temporal growth in their homes....
"..... Another word for nurturing is homemaking. Homemaking includes cooking, washing clothes and dishes, and keeping an orderly home. Home is where women have the most power and influence; therefore, Latter-day Saint women should be the best homemakers in the world"
LEADERS- in equal partnership with their husbands, they lead a great and eternal organization....
".....These mothers plan for the future of their organization. They plan for missions, temple marriages, and education. They plan for prayer, scripture study, and family home evening. Mothers who know build children into future leaders and are the primary examples of what leaders look like....."

I remember when growing up going to the temple grounds on sunny Sunday afternoons with my family. I mostly remember running around and playing with the statues of families.... but I also remember my parents talking about the day I would someday enter the temple. Every time I walk through the Seattle Temple garden's and go in to do baptism's I remember those moments and I am so grateful that my mother made that effort to talk about the temple and bring me there when I was younger. I look forward to the day when we can go through together for more than just baptisms. I also remember having FHE lessons on missionary work and having the missionaries over all the time, now as I am starting to look into serving a mission I am getting so much support from my mom. I know that these steps towards heaven in my life are because my mom took the time to talk to me when I was younger and she made the effort to make these things such a great importance in my life.
(click on pictures)
TEACHERS- they use scripture study, prayer, family home evening (FHE), and mealtimes to teach...."..... A well-taught friend told me that he did not learn anything at church that he had not already learned at home. His parents used family scripture study, prayer, family home evening, mealtimes, and other gatherings to teach. Think of the power of our future missionary force if mothers considered their homes as a pre–missionary training center. Then the doctrines of the gospel taught in the MTC would be a review and not a revelation....."

DO LESS- these mothers choose carefully and do not try to choose it all.....
"...... They permit less of what will not bear good fruit eternally. They allow less media in their homes, less distraction, less activity that draws their children away from their home. Mothers who know are willing to live on less and consume less of the world’s goods in order to spend more time with their children...."

STAND STRONG AND BE IMMOVABLE- they do not give up during difficult and discouraging times.....
"..... Who will prepare this righteous generation of sons and daughters? Latter-day Saint women will do this—women who know and love the Lord and bear testimony of Him, women who are strong and immovable and who do not give up during difficult and discouraging times......"

are you a mother who knows?
     Q: Can you really work out anywhere???

A: YES!!!!!
     I found this cute little video that made me laugh just a little, but honestly she does have some good tips!
     Her whole little thing about the plates just kinda cracks me up but I really do see how you could get some good results with these simple exercises. (TIP: I personally suggest not using your favorite plates.... just in case you drop them. Maybe go to a local dollar store and pic up some cute cheap plates that you dont mind dinging and chipping up.) I personally can attest to the fact that when weight lifting the weight does not need to be heavy, it's the repetition. Squeezing and tightening your muscles when lifting and then releasing when coming down can actually help tone your arms more than you would think and believe me you will feel it the next day!!!! (5 minutes with a 2 pound weight really can do wonders for your arms- and you feel it!!!!) You can also you canned foods or apples, bunches of bananas or watermelons for kitchen weight lifting. 

     When working your but dont feel like you have to lean over as much as she does, start out by standing up straight and using the counter for a balance. kick your legs out behind you and this will work your gluets. As you gain better balance you can start to lean over like she does. 

     Here is a link to another fun kitchen exercise video. This one makes me laugh just as much as the first, but the benefits are amazing!!!

     Other easy and fun ways to exercise in the kitchen is:
1) LEG AND BUTT LIFTS: While standing at the sink washing dishes or scrubbing veggies, or even when filling up a pitcher of water lift your right leg behind you and pulse it up and down. Switch legs and repeat.
2) DANCE: when you go into the kitchen to clean or cook, turn on some of your favorite tunes, wear some socks so you can slide and spin easily on the floor and just have fun!!!! Sing into the broom, play percussion on your pots and pans, do ballet turns when going from the dishwasher to the silverware drawer, shake your hips and salsa when looking for an ingredient in the fridge. Dont worry if anyone is looking, because truth be know- if they are watching you they are watching because they are jealous not because they think you look funny :) 
3) COUNTER PUSH-UPS: Do these while waiting for the toast to pop up or for the microwave to finish! First, place your hands on the counter a little wider than shoulder-width and step a few feet away with your legs. Bend your elbows, bringing your chest toward the countertop, then push back up to the start position.
4) SADDLEBAG SLIMMERS AND INNER THIGH TONER: For the saddlebag slimmers, stand with your left side to the counter and place your left hand on it. Lift your right leg out to the side about a foot off the ground and pulse. For the inner thigh toner, stand with your left side to the counter and place your hand on it. Lift your right leg off the floor and bring it across the front of your body toward the left side. Pulse. Switch sides and repeat. You can also do these when waiting for the toaster or the cookies in the oven or even while waiting for the oven to preheat.
5) DISHWASHER SQUATS: Who would have thought that you could get some exercise done while loading and unloading the dishwasher? Dishwasher squats can be added by doing a squat for every item you load or unload from the dishwasher. when you reach for an item to unload, add a squat, slowly standing back up each time. It may take longer to load or unload the dishwasher but adding some basic squats can help tone!
6) SINK SQUATS: Stand about an arm-length away from the sink with your feet shoulder-width apart. Squat and hold for five seconds. Look at this lady, you can even do these in jeans and still look good!!! Do this while dinner is simmering on the stove or you are waiting for the yeast to rise.
7) LEG STRETCH: Place one leg straight on the counter top  keeping your back as straight as you can, lean forward and reach for your toes. If you can not touch your toes reach out your hand and slowly walk your fingers down your leg till you can reached a good relaxing stretch.
     Remember that kitchen exercises are something you can do while the cookies are in the oven (that way you dont feel guilty for that extra cookie or two :), while dinner is simmering in the oven or the pan with the hardened egg yolk on it is soaking in the sink. Have fun and enjoy the body you have!!!!!

    Kayla Morrill

    I am so glad that you are visiting my blog!!!! I have created this blog in hopes to uplift women from all backgrounds and remind you that you are a daughter of a Heavenly King, you have a divine heritage and you have the potential to do many marvelous things in this life as well as the life to come.. I believe in the worth of women and I want all women to embrace life and recognize the blessing that they are.

    I love you all so very much!!!


    November 2012
    October 2012