Sunday, July 28, 2013


[prahy-mer-ee, -muh-ree]  adjective, noun, plural pri·ma·ries.
1 .First or highest in rank or importance; chief; principle
2. first in order in any series, sequence, etc.
3. first in time; earliest; primitive.
4. of, pertaining to, or characteristic of primary school: the primary grades.
5. constituting or belonging to the first stage in any process.

In the Primary organization of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, we support and back-up the parents in teaching young children the truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ. We help the children develop a firm foundation of faith and correct principles upon which to build their lives.  If we do our jobs well , the children will find church a safe, warm, happy, welcoming place.  They will learn to pray and seek answers from the Source of all wisdom.  They will learn to recognize the Holy Spirit.  We will help them prepare to make and keep sacred covenants, firmly placing their feet on the path to eternal life and happiness. If we do our jobs well, we will see terrific, not troubled, teens and confident, faithful, happy adults.

It is a blessing and a privilege to be trusted with the sacred responsibility of teaching the little children whom Jesus so dearly loves.

Friday, July 26, 2013

"The Impossible"

At the BloodSource donating platelets Wednesday, I watched “The Impossible”.   Have you seen it?

I would not recommend if  for children or for anyone about to vacation in the tropics. 

 Not a movie to help keep your blood pressure down.  The true story of a family vacationing in Thailand for Christmas, caught in the biggest tsunami to hit Asia, and their struggle to survive and find each other. .  INTENSE and not pretty. Miraculously, all 5 members of this family did survive and find each other.  Well done, moving, scary. Real.  A somber reminder of the importance of family and love.  And the blessing of the Plan of Salvation and eternal families. So many people did not find their families.  They were not emphasized in the  movie, but they are just as real. 

What a difference it makes to have the promise that someday you WILL find them.  And that everything will be ok.  More than ok. Through the atonement of Christ all that is unfair in this life can be made right.  Hallelujah!  

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Let the Biker Beware

     I feel blessed to have made it in to work today.
     At the 65th Street crossing from Target to the Kroy Pedestrian/Bike Pathway a car ran the the red light, speeding through the crosswalk where I was about to cross.   It screeched to a halt just past the crosswalk.  It was not blocking any traffic where it stopped, but suddenly it started backing up to where it should have stopped in the first place.  It clipped my back wheel as I tried to evade it.  I confess I called it a name under my breath. 
     Matthew 5:  22 "But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire." 
      Ok, I had cause, but the 2nd part of that scripture appears  independent of the 1st.  And what I said was "Idiot" but I think it's close enough.  Do you really think I am danger of 'hell fire'?  for that I mean.  I am afraid I have done worse things than that in my life.
       I also applied the term to myself for not being more watchful.   The car was in the wrong, but as Pancho says in The Man of La Mancha, " whether the pitcher hits the stone or the stone hits the pitcher, it's going to be bad for the pitcher."  The bicyclist should always be vigilant.
        There were also an unusual number of cars pulling out of parking places which I needed to beware. 
        On the flip side, more than one car waited to make their legal turn and let me cross the street ahead of them when I was prepared to wait for them.  It always warms my heart a little to see the small courtesies many drivers extend to bicycles.
       If I were Andrew I would now make a spiritual application about always being on guard against the wiles and sneak attacks of the devil. But I will leave that to you.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

   Saturday morning Andrew and I pulled weeds for a couple hours.  Got a lot done.  LOTS more needs doing. Then we went to the PO and mailed Benjamin Korean copies of the Book of Mormon AND the music the brothers have been working on getting him :)      
    After that Andrew and I went to Davis Ranch Corn Festival out by Sloughhouse on Jackson Road.  Like going to an Apple Hill Farm in October only way closer, better parking, and WARM.  Lots of cool crafts.  Some vendor food.  Supposedly free BBQ corn, but we didn’t see it.  Great produce for sale but the lines were too long for us.  We were tired.  There were rows and rows of strawberry pots 4 feet high - you pay a fee for a little basket like you get berries in the store, wash your hands, and go pick berries.  Live entertainment  (ok), jump house, pony rides - the nasty kind where the ponies are tied to spokes and walk around in tight circles  in the sun whether or not anyone is riding them.  It was fun and tempting to see all the craft items. Lots of charms, including dragon charms that Andrew liked.  Personal brands (for branding your steaks.  yeah, right) One of the coolest things we saw were Belt Buckle/Knives.  The Knife looks like part of the belt buckle, is held on with a good magnet, and comes off with the flick of a thumb.  Also has a fire starter and sharpener.  Pretty cool.  But the plain one (no) cost $70.  With a decoration on either the knife or the buckle - tree scene, fire design, all kinds of stuff, I think it was $75.  and more expensive ones.  I kept thinking that my guys would love it.  And I love my guys.  But I cannot spend that kind of money. Another thing I really liked were Scarf Necklaces. They really were pretty and different. It was fun looking at all the creative things.
       I have been called to a new church position,  Next Sunday I will be sustained and will be released from Building Scheduler and Sunday School Teacher.  I taught my last SS class.  That was short - just half a year.  I told them there was a change coming, but I was not sure how soon, because at that point I was not sure. Later I found out that today was my last day. There was no weeping and gnashing of teeth. I hope their new teacher is interesting and inspiring.  I am sure they would appreciate the change.
      Bishop and Brother Brown came over Thursday and extended the call. They said that when they were considering names for this calling the answer came clearly.  I accepted based on faith in their testimony and on my covenants to serve.  For the next couple of days I thought about it and prayed for a personal confirmation.  As I considered that the primary requirements for the position are love for the Lord and love for His children, I was suddenly filled with warmth and I knew it was right to accept.  I am concerned about the demands of time, energy and creativity, but as the Lord wants me to do it, He will help me and so will others.
       It is 10:30 Sunday night and I need to sleep.  How does the weekend go so quickly?!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Now I Lay Me

I am foolishly reluctant to settle down and go to sleep because I just don't feel ready to get up and go to work.  Silly me.  I cannot imagine what it would be like if I actually disliked my job.  I love State Parks and I mostly like my work and my co-workers.  I just don't like all the time it takes away from my life.  What I need, though, is to develop better time, energy and other resource management.

It has been a good, but as usual, not sufficiently productive weekend.

Although there are plenty of chores not done, I am glad that Andrew and I took off Saturday and went up to Castle Crags State Park.  We didn't leave until after noon.  Not that I accomplished much in the morning unfortunately. 

At the Park entrance, I told the ranger that we just wanted to take a look.  He said if we wanted to look at the crags, we could drive down the road and look at them for free from our car instead of entering the Park, paying a fee, and taking a little hike.  Which we did. 

Advantage to entering the Park - at the end of the easy hike, there is a telescope and some information.  Also you can see some other dark crags or something to the west and also Mt Shasta to the north east.  And the information  thing tells a bit about how they are different and were created.  It's pretty nice up there.  We have done very brief sneak in stops on the way home from visiting Rosers   But we didn't go there this time.  We might not have to pay the day use fee anyway, since I work for Parks, but I didn't ask.  We decided to try the other views he mentioned.  Glad we did.

As we drove down the road, we realized that it was all Park property.  Until we got to Shasta-Trinity National Forest property.  We did get some great views of the Castle Crags.  We might have been on the side low on the formations to the west and the Castle Crags themselves blocked any view of Shasta. (I think) So we just saw the crags and beautiful forest, but not the other formations.

Coming back down, we stopped at a trail head on Park property that said PCT. Which I failed to comprehend.  We visited a couple of primitive (no running water or 'facilities') walk in camp-sites.  Right beyond them were hiking trails, one of which lead to the Pacific Coast Trail.  Oh, PCT, I should have remembered.

It was beautiful and peaceful there.  So quiet that we heard the rustling of a snake in the grass as it went down to the rocks of a dry stream bed and the skittering of a lizard on the rails of the little bridge over it. 

Andrew is a great companion.  He ENJOYS everything. 

Today was a good day.  My Sunday School class went OK.  Certainly not what they show in the training videos, but ok.  I have more to learn in this new teaching program "Come Follow Me".  The program takes a LOT more study and preparation on my part than the old study the lesson and spit it out routine.  If it helps the kids learn to develop stronger testimonies (and me, too) it's great.  One of the kids was really great at participating. Shared thoughts, insights and experiences.  A couple were quietly with me.  One looked totally bored. 

One "chore" I did not get done was work on a birthday present which I had planned to do today.  Need to get cracking!  I have an idea, a pretty simple one, too, but getting it from hazy idea, to plan, to actuality is not going quickly.  Maybe I can work on it tomorrow after work.

Work. Tomorrow.  I need to go to bed.