Homeschool Conference!!!

Look at all those beautiful little feet two people can create!

Look at all those beautiful little feet two people can create!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Power of Words

“Sticks and stones may break my bones, 
but words will never hurt me.”


I recall hearing these very words as a young child.  
I did not question their validity; 
I don’t know that I even gave them much of a thought.  
It was just something we would call out if we needed a boost of courage during an ugly moment.  
It would often end the dispute and all was well.  
As an adult, I take issue with this statement.

Words have lasting effect for good or otherwise.  
And once spoken cannot be taken back.
Words contain power; 
they have a force that penetrates deep within.  
When used correctly, our words build, support and encourage.  
When used incorrectly, the damage is far greater than any stick or stone could inflict.
Words can help us to achieve our best and highest aspirations or leave us feeling distraught and defeated.

All too often, we don’t consider how meaningful and impactful the words we share with the world may be.  
Are we building or demolishing?  
Are we cheering and sustaining 
or discouraging and condemning?  

This world needs a little more tenderness, warmth and affection…
and what better place to start than in our very homes?!

As we ponder the words that may come from our lips to the ones we most cherish in this world, we would do well to choose them wisely. 
In our home, I have the words, 
"The way we talk to our children becomes their inner voice",

displayed where I see them many times each day.  
There is a purpose in this.  
I cannot say that I have always thought before speaking, 
or that I have always chosen the very best words to share with those I love.  
There are times of high frustration that I speak and wish I could take back the ugliness that flew from my mouth, but I cannot.  
Knowing all too well the lasting effect of harsh words, I strive to be better and to share words of kindness and encouragement with our kids. 
The words spoken to us 
as well as the words we tell ourselves, 
have a lasting footprint on our hearts.  
And just as the quote above states, 
the words we hear directed to us become our inner voice.  
I wish for the inner voice of my children to be filled with all the positives this world has and be spared the negative, heartbreaking thoughts they would be better off without.   

When I think of how my words impact others, I draw in a deep breath, and choose biting my tongue near in half, if necessary, just to spare the negative effects of a nasty word during moments of strife and contention.
As a mother, I would like the power of my words to be for good – to boost our children, to enlighten, to inspire, to motivate and invigorate, to embolden and fortify them against all that life may throw their way.  
The last thing they need is a mother to use words that might kill the beautiful spirit they possess, or to belittle and deprecate the amazing power they have within.  
So I will be shouting out all the beautiful words that come to mind as I think of how lucky I am to be the mother of this amazing family! 
What words would you choose to share with your kids if you had but just a few words to leave them with???
Wishing you a month filled with powerful words that will create lasting bonds between you and your sweet families!
Hugs!

Stacey

(Written as DHSA President's Message for April)

Monday, April 21, 2014

Singing, Baptisms, Bike Riding and Trials.....

News from Danielle...she has been having a bit of a rough time, sometimes girls are not the very nicest, but she is happy and doing well.  Check out her happy stories below.  :)

It's the best week ever!
I have way too many good stories to tell, and I probably won't get to them all, SO I'll start with the happiest.
>>>>SISTER SCHNEIDER GOT BAPTIZED<<<<<<
It was such an incredible day.
Brother Schneider had kept the program a secret from his wife, and had planned it all out for her.
The chapel was totally packed. 
She had family from out of town come in, 
all kinds of friends, 
and basically the whole ward there to support their family.

Sister Shumway and I sang Come Thou Fount. 
(What I would have given to be there to hear my sweet girl sing this song!!!)

It was a really pretty arrangement, but Sister Schneider cried through the whole thing. 
Afterwards she asked if Andy had changed the song on us last second. We told her that we hadn't, that it had been planned for several weeks. 
A few days before her baptism, they watched a movie with that song in it and she told us how much she fell in love with it. 
How perfect is that?
Once all the talks and things were finished, we went into the font room, (which was too full to fit everyone,) and her husband, Andy, baptized her. 
The feelings in that room were so strong. 
When she came out of the water, her face was just beaming. 
They hugged and basically everyone in the room who wasn't already crying, started crying. And then they all clapped :) it was so sweet.

Truth- Sometimes being a missionary isn't very fun, or happy, or exciting. 
And sometimes you just want to go to bed forever.   :(
(This mom wants to hop on the next plane and go wrap her arms around her girl...but instead, I will love her from here and encourage and uplift her every chance I get...
but wait for it, 
her strength shines through!!!)
But after seeing their family grow together and know that they can now become and eternal family, it's all worth it.   :)
Every bad day, 
every mean person, 
every disappointment, 
so what? 
NOTHING could feel so good as the spirit in the church last Saturday. 
I'd do it all again just for that. 
The church is so true. 
I know it. 
(are you crying, because I sure am...she is just amazing!)

Some other crazy things from the week:
We rode bikes! 
It was awful... 
(one of those "not fun" things haha.) 
My dang bike was falling apart on me all day long! 
The front tire and handlebars like to turn in opposite directions. 
The handlebars also like to fall off. 
The seat isn't stationary. 
The chain sometimes likes to go on vacation. 
BUT I LIVED! 
One of the many 'pit stops' I had to take took place in front of a house. 
On that house was a porch. 
On that porch were some men. 
The following narration depicts our conversation:
"Yaaaall like ta party?"
*ignore*
(louder) "Yall like ta party?"
*super ignore*
"WELL EXCUSE ME! GET OFF OF MY PROPERTY!"
Bahahahaha. 
Silly guy thought I had intentions of STAYING on "his" property. 
 
We also met our mailman this week 
(while we were locked out of our apartment...oops
"I'm John, John Bytheway" 
Either he's mocking us, or in disguise. 
We're not really sure which....
 
Quann Quote of the week:
"Where's that brother with the 8 kids?"
"They ALL have 8 kids..."
 
"The trials of life can be very deep and we are not shallow people if we struggle with them." -Elder Holland

So love this sweet girl...she strengthens me each time I hear from her.  Wow, do I miss her this week, must be because of Easter and knowing she has been struggling.  I love her testimony and her willingness to endure, stay true and keep pushing even during the hard times.  I think I'll go cuddle with my little ones, maybe that will help the ache in my heart a little.  

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Holy Magical Taco Bell!

The latest from sweet Danielle!
She sounded soooo great this week...just made my heart sing to feel the happiness in her emails.  Enjoy!

Transfer week!
Well, Sister Anderson was finally voted off the Island. 
And now, Sister Shumway is here! 
She is super fun. 
We're both redheads
and we get a lot of comments on that.
I think the ward is worried that we're going to cause trouble or something....

She is from Snowflake, Arizona, and we are having a ton of fun together!
We also got a new elder in our area. I managed to convince him I was from Canada. It was a pretty good lie, until I decided to tell him the truth. I'm shocked he believed me lol.

On to the good news: 
We got our car back!! We did fairly well without it for a few days, but it sure rained a lot this week! We were super grateful to have it back Saturday and Sunday though... that's when the rain was the worst. 
On Sunday the drizzle turned into a huge rainstorm, 
then to a huge snow storm, 
then to hail, 
and then back to rain... 
and I was so well prepared for it 
that I was wearing cloth shoes and everything. Haha. 
When I got home that night, they were so wet that they oozed every time I took a step and I had to ring my socks out :P

Miracle of the week! 
We were carpooling to Sykesville with the elders while our car was in the shop, and on the way home they decided they were starving 
(typical, they are always starving) 
and so we stopped at Taco Bell. 
Taco Bell is always a good place to go, 
but there's something special about this Taco Bell. 
Before we walked in I told them that EVERY time I go there, I wind up finding someone new to teach, or I meet someone important that gives us someone to teach. So they laugh and said yeah right. And we walked in. The cashier started talking to me and says, 
"There were some ladies in here earlier who were having a bible study. They go to the Church on Slacks Road." (THAT'S OUR CHURCH!) "I can't go this week cause I'm working, but she got my phone number and told me that she'd bring the sister missionaries over to my house. 
Are you the sister Missionaries?"

HOLY.
MAGICAL.
TACO BELL.

What did I tell those elders?
Did we find, or did we find?

I stinking love that Taco Bell. It's so nice.

Other than that, the General Women's Broadcast Saturday night was INCREDIBLE. If you missed it, watch at LEAST the last talk
You can find it on LDS.org. 
It was so good!
Have a happy week!
Sister Lytle