Thursday, April 30, 2009

Sisterly prerogative #2

My brother Larry was the only boy sandwiched between 4 girls (until our youngest brother Jamey was born.) We lived out in the country in Oklahoma and had zero other kids to play with. With only 3 channels on our black and white TV, we had to find other ways to amuse ourselves.

In this 1961 photo, Cindy has forced Larry to dress up in a dress and headband. I think Cindy has on Larry's shirt and jeans. (I am in the background).

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Ten Things I Would Love to Do but I Can't

Take another trip to England.
Go to a quilt show today.
Shop in antique stores today.
Home tours of old houses.
Make something from something else.
Have a cleaning lady come to clean my house.
Paint a sky on dining room ceiling.
Rip out things from magazines at dentist's or doctor'soffice
Sleep as late as I want in the morning.
Sew all day and never care about anything else.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Quilts for Charity

I don't feel right sewing on Sunday for my business, so if I am dying to sew on Sunday I will make quilts for charity. I have made lots and lots of baby quilts over the years. Our quilt guild gives them to the neonatal clinic at the hospital where they lay them over the tops of the incubators to give the room more color. The parents get to take them home with their baby.

Right now I am in charge of a service project in our stake, for our stake "Day of Service" on May 2, so lots of people have been donating fabric and I have made about 12 of these quilt tops in the last couple of weeks. I even sewed all day on my birthday, it was my birthday present to myself. I had so much fun!

Here are a bunch of simple quilts that I made last year for charity, they are not masterpieces but I bet they are appreciated anyway. Most of that fabric had been given to me, or I bought it cheap at yard sales. I will try to take some more photos of the ones we make on May 2, and tell you how many we made.

I have a simple method for using fabric scraps for charity baby quilts. Collect any pieces of appropriate fabric which is the full width of the fabric (approximately 45" wide). I have a 6" wide ruler which is 24" long. ( If I had a wider ruler which was long I would use it.) I cut the fabric into 6" strips. cutting it the width of the fabric. I put the strips into color coordinated groups. Many times I have a pile of red, white, and blue colors, a pile of pastels, and a pile of bright jewel tones.

Sew the strips together, then cut them crosswise into 6" pieced strips. Arrange the strips, making sure no fabric touches the same fabric. For most of the quilt, I use fabrics which are 45" wide. But if I have some smaller scraps, I will cut them into 6"x6" squares, and mix them in with the rest of the patchwork wherever I need an alternate color mixed in.

The key to making these quilts attractive is to use a nice mixture of fabrics, with colors that blend. Also, lay the pieces out and look at them to make sure that the same fabric is not repeated next to itself.

There is no mathematical formula for making the right amount of patchwork. I always have a few pieces or rows of patchwork leftover, and I save these to combine with future fabric.

When I was first starting to do freemotion machine quilting, I took a class from Harriett Hargrave. She told the class that we would never become good at machine quilting unless we practiced a lot. So that year I made 30 charity baby quiilts, and machine quilted them like crazy, and really became good at it with all that practice.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Wayne's senior year

Here are some photos of Wayne during his senior year of high school.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Satin Quilt- 1952

This is a photo of my oldest sister, Cheryl, on the satin quilt that my mother made when she was pregnant. My parents lived in a logging camp in the mountains of Arizona, and there was no electricity except at night when they would turn on the generator.

She was home during the day, so she machine quilted this quilt by turning the handle of her electric sewing machine by hand for every stitch.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Bizarre but true facts about Amy

I have written a daily diary since 1973.
I have eaten squid.(1979)
I have swam in the Dead Sea. (1979)
I received a National Merit scholarship (1977)
I threw up on top of my brother's head (5 years old)
I can pick up items with my toes.
I don't have pierced ears.
I have never had any broken bones.
My mother forgot me at church twice when I was a child.
I once forgot Tara at church when she was 5.
I backed into a policeman's car and smashed in the door (1975)
I was on the BYU Bronze Ballroom Dance Team (77-78)
Our family was on TV and on the front page of the Salt Lake Tribune in one day (the day we left Utah Dec. 1987, stranded at the airport in a huge snowstorm.)
I used to live in the Russian ambassador's mansion in London while I was on Study Abroad. (1979 Jan-June)
While driving a convertible with the top down, I accidently smashed a turtle (age 16).
I was a skiing fanatic while I was in college.
I do not know how to dive.
I have gone through the Chunnel (Oct 1997?)
I hurt my knee doing karate in college.
I have sung on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry (1977)(we toured it and they had us sing happy birthday to someone.)
I turned in my papers to go on a mission, then changed my mind. (1980) (Because I fell in love with Wayne instead.)
We had a mushroom growing in the carpet of our burgundy station wagon (1991?).
A skunk sprayed inside our house. (around 5thgrade)
A house fire destroyed our upstairs. (5th grade)

Friday, April 24, 2009

Ordinances in the Pre-existence

This is the first time I ever heard that there might be church ordinances that are required in the pre-existence, in the spirit world before we are born.

p. 350, The Life and Teachings of Jesus and His Apostles (Institute NT Manual)

"There must be leaders, presiding officers, and those who are worthy and able to take command. During the ages in which we dwelt in the premortal state we not only developed our various characteristics and showed our worthiness and ability, or the lack of it, but we were also where such progress could be observed.

It is reasonable to believe that there was a Church organization there. The heavenly beings were living in a perfectly arranged society. Every person knew his place. Priesthood, without any question, had been conferred and the leaders were chosen to officiate. Ordinances pertaining to that pre-existence were required and the love of God prevailed.

Under such conditions it was natural for our Father to discern and choose those who were most worthy and evaluate the talents of each individual. He knew not only what each of us could do, but also what each of us would do when put to the test and when responsibility was given us. Then, when the time came for our habitation on mortal earth, all things were prepared and the servants of the Lord chosen and ordained to their respective missions."

(Smith, The Way to Perfection, pp. 50-51)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

My 50th Birthday

For my fiftieth birthday, I thought I would show you some birthday photos from my past. Here I am two years old. (Click on photos to make them bigger.)

Five years old.

Eating cake at my birthday party when I was eight years old. (I am in front of the stove.)

This ballerina jewelry box was one of the gifts I received that year. (Notice my pretty bedroom, my canopy bed and record player.)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Painting on suitcases

I hate finding my black suitcases at the airport baggage claim, because they look just like everyone else's. So over the past few years while I have been travelling so much teaching quilting, I have painted several sets of suitcases with bright flowers, polka dots, and stripes. You can use almost any kind of paint, I think I used acrylic craft paint.

(As the years have gone by, and my luggage keeps breaking and getting thrown away, I have become less and less artistic. Now I pretty much just throw a bunch of silly squiggles on it. I used to be more painstaking.)

My boys complained and said I had ruined all our luggage, that it was too girly for them to take anywhere. I guess I could have done a bit more masculine patterns just by painting a wide red stripe down each side of the suitcase.

If you don't want to permanently paint your luggage, here's another idea. Haven, a girl in my seminary class, cut brightly colored duct tape into flowers and stars and pretty shapes, and she stuck it all over her black band instrument case. And from across the room I thought it was paint.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Resurrected Christ

Today in seminary we talked about how the Jewish leaders went to Pilate and asked him to set a watch (of Roman guards) at Jesus’ tomb, so that his disciples would not come by night, steal the body, and say that Jesus was risen from the dead. (Matt. 27:62-66). Then in Matt. 28:1-4, and Matt. 28:11-15 we read about the Roman guards leaving their posts when the earthquake and angels rolled back the stone from the tomb, and how the Jewish elders paid the soldiers off to say that the disciples had stolen the body while the soldiers slept.

I told the students that their non-Christian friends don’t believe in the resurrection of Jesus. But the sad thing is that many of their Christian friends might believe that Jesus was resurrected, but don’t believe he has a physical body.

The scriptures give concrete examples of Jesus having a real physical body (in a more perfect glorious form) after his resurrection: He let the disciples feel his hands and feet and he ate fish and honeycomb (Luke 24:36-43). I said they need to ask their friends, “Where in the scriptures does it say that Jesus’ physical body fell off?”

I told them they don’t have to rely just on the Bible to know that Jesus was resurrected and that He is still alive today. All they have to do is listen to the Conference talks when the twelve apostles of our day testify of the living Christ. They can’t say it straight out, because the National Enquirer would call them crazy, but they give veiled references to the fact that they are, indeed, actual first-hand witnesses of Jesus Christ. One of my favorites of these testimonies was given by Ezra Taft Benson in the Ensign, April 1991, p. 4. (And it isn’t very veiled.)

“And so on the third day following His burial, He came forth from the tomb alive and showed Himself to many. There were witnesses then who saw Him. There have been many in this dispensation who have seen Him. As one of those special witnesses so called in this day, I testify to you that He lives. He lives with a resurrected body. There is no truth or fact of which I am more assured or more confident than the truth of the literal resurrection of our Lord.”

I believe what he says. (Read the whole talk on by clicking HERE.)

Monday, April 20, 2009


I hate quick oatmeal, I love regular old-fashioned oatmeal. My sister Carla taught me to make perfect old-fashioned oatmeal.

Oatmeal Recipe

Think of how much oatmeal you want, if its 2 cups, put 2 cups water in a pan. Add some salt. Bring to a boil.

Pour slowly: regular (not quick or instant) oatmeal into the boiling water, just until the last two or three oatmeals do not sink, they float on the top. Never stir it.

Turn stove to very low (electric stove dial says 2 or 3). Leave uncovered. Just keep watching it for a few minutes until almost all the water has boiled away. There will be little holes going clear down to the bottom, with steam shooting out of them. Take it off the stove when it is as dry as you want it to be.

I try to make more than I want, then I keep it in a container in the fridge. Then I can heat up some in the microwave quickly for breakfast, and don't have to wait around cooking it each time.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Zac is Knotty

Zac got a book of knots last year, and has become quite a master at tying complicated ones. He easily ties this one without looking at any instructions, he knows it by heart.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Solar Ovens

As you know, I am interested in emergency preparedness, and I worry about things like hurricanes and ice storms, which knock out power in our area on a regular basis, every few years. So I like to see ways to cook or heat without power. Here are several articles with instructions and photos of solar ovens, which can boil water or bake bread or whatever.

Now I am trying to collect the cardboard boxes, plexiglass, black spray paint, etc. that I need to build one.

Making and using a solar cooker

Inventor turns cardboard boxes into eco-friendly oven

Solar-powered Cardboard Cooker

Friday, April 17, 2009

Adam's Birthday

Happy Birthday Adam! Here is a self-portrait Adam made for a class project at NC State. It is made out of hundreds of photos. (Click on photo to make it bigger.) I am so impressed every time I see any of his artwork.

He has a talent for every kind of art. He bought a plain box, and carved this Celtic knot into it, and stained it. It is gorgeous!

Also, you should know that Adam LOVES Halloween. He dresses up every year. Here is one of his awesome costumes, when he was around 23.

And here is a costume he designed when he was four. He knew just what he wanted it to look like. (Seth, 15 mos. old, is with him.)

He is a creative, talented, intelligent, caring, patient, and brilliant young man, and I love him!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

"Back to the Basics" quilt

I made "Back to the Basics"(48"x50") in 2007 when I was feeling sick of everything I had been sewing. (Click on photo to make it bigger and see the stitching.) I was constantly making class samples for the quilting classes I was teaching (Crooked Log Cabins, Crazy Quilts, Curvaceous Piecing, and Fusible Houses) and I was tired of those techniques.

I found these string-pieced blocks in my UFO (unfinished objects) stash, and started whipping them together using some bright striped fabric for the sashing and great big black-and-white checks for the setting squares.

I used a huge polka-dot for one of the inner borders, plus another black-and-white-check for the other inner border (and for the binding).

When I got to that point, I thought, "I might as well be able to use this quilt for a class sample anyway" so I added a curvaceous pieced border, and now I can show it in my "Curvaceous" classes. So it wasn't a complete waste of time after all, even though I made it as a temper tantrum against doing my business.

I named it "Back to the Basics" because it was just simple stuff all thrown together for no reason.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Rock Climbing at Pilot Mountain

Wayne and Zac went to Pilot Mountain with our scout troop on Saturday. They had a great time. In this photo Zac was dangling from an overhang and couldn't get back on the wall. Wayne had to climb up, grab his foot, and pull him over there. (Click on photos to make them bigger.)

(Left)Wayne did a lot of training that day, teaching boys to belay and climb.
(Below Left)Wayne is assisting a boy to belay.

(Above right)Here are a lot of the boys at the bottom of the cliff, watching the other climbers. They have to wear helmets, because of falling rocks. (Zac is standing up, right behind Wayne.)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

An Apostle's Easter Thoughts on Christ

In my quiz yesterday, I didn't include any questions on Jeffrey R. Holland's talk, it was just too sacred. Our church has made a YouTube video containing four minutes of this talk, in which Elder Holland, an apostle, testifies of Jesus Christ's atoning sacrifice for us.

I have a testimony that our church is led by a true prophet of God on the earth today, and twelve apostles, who are true witnesses of Christ. Watch the YouTube video by clicking HERE.

Monday, April 13, 2009

General Conference quiz

Twice a year at General Conference I make a quiz for my seminary kids about the talks at the Sunday sessions of Conference. See how much you can remember. (The answers are at the end.)

If you want to hear the audio recordings, or read the text of any of the talks, go to

179th annual conference- April 2009 Sunday sessions

The Way of the Disciple Pres. Dieter F. Uchtdorf
(1) A friend of mine recently wrote to me, confiding that he was having a difficult time keeping his testimony strong and vibrant. He asked for counsel.
I wrote back to him and lovingly suggested a few specific things he could do that would align his life more closely with the teachings of the restored gospel. To my surprise, I heard back from him only a week later. The essence of his letter was this: “
1A-I tried what you suggested. It didnt work. What else have you got?”
1B-I tried what you suggested. I have just been called to be a bishop. Thanks a lot.
1C-I tried what you suggested. I have gained four pounds and have lost my job.

(2)Ours is not a __________________religion. We cannot receive the blessings of the gospel merely by observing the good that others do. We need to get off the sidelines and practice what we preach.
2A-Perplexing 2B-Vibrant 2C-Spectacular 2D-Secondhand

Come unto Him Elder Neal L. Anderson, new apostle
(3)Just after my call as a General Authority 16 years ago, in a stake conference where I accompanied President Boyd K. Packer, he said something I have not forgotten. As he addressed the congregation, he said, “I know who I am.” Then after a pause, he added, “I am a ___________.” He then turned to me, sitting on the stand behind him, and said, “And, Brother Andersen, you are a ___________ too.” Then he added these words: “If you ever forget it, the Lord will remind you of it instantly, and it won’t be pleasant.”
(The same answer is in both blanks)
3A-General Authority
3C-Child of God

Steven E. Snow, presidency of Seventy
(4)During the very early years of her life, our niece Lachelle spent the mornings with her grandmother. Lachelle soon turned five years old and was preparing to begin school. On their last morning together, Grandma Squire said. I love you so much; what will I ever do without you?”With wisdom beyond her five years, Lachelle looked up at her grandmother with big brown eyes. “Grandma,” she said,

4A-I’m going to be like the Three Little Pigs, and make my own way in the world.
4 B- I love you too, but it is time I got on with my life.
4C-You are too old, I want to hang out with people my own age.

(5)Pres. Snow told the story of an early member of the church in Utah, named Robert Gardner. After building up a home and business and then going broke, he was called on a mission to Canada. After he got back, he built up his business again. What happened to him next?

5A-He was called to be an apostle
5B-His wife died, and he lost his business again.
5C-He was called to settle southern Utah.
5D-A large hailstorm destroyed his crops.

His Arm is Sufficient Barbara Thompson
(6)She was visiting her nieces. At family prayer time, their mother reminded the children to pray for the bishop, who was having some serious health problems. Three-year-old Brooklyn offered the prayer that evening. She thanked Heavenly Father for their blessings, and then she fervently asked Him to

6A-“bless the bishop because his eyes are broken.”
6B-“bless the bishop, because he can’t come to church if his legs don’t work.”
6C-“bless the bishop, because he can’t talk good anymore.”

Unselfish Service Elder Dallin H. Oaks(7)One of our family members recently overheard a young couple on an airline flight explaining that they chose to

7A- Go on vacation instead of paying their tithing.
7B-Buy a new car instead of paying off their credit card debts.
7C- Have a dog instead of having children.

(8)Elder John A. Widtsoe declared, “We cannot walk as other men, or talk as other men, or do as other men, for we have a different destiny, obligation, and responsibility placed upon us, and we must fit ourselves [to it].”6 That reality has current application to every trendy action, including immodest dress. As a wise friend observed, “You can’t be a life saver

8A- if you don’t know how to swim.
8B- if you look like all the other swimmers on the beach.
8C-if you don’t have a lifeguard’s license.
8D-if you never go near the water.

Honorably Hold a Name and Standing Elder David. A. Bednar
(9) Shortly after I was called to serve as a stake president in 1987, I talked with a good friend who recently had been released as a stake president. During our conversation I asked him what he would teach me about becoming an effective stake president. He said he would have:

9A-Emphasized home teaching and visiting teaching more.
9B-Made his primary focus the worthiness of every member to receive temple covenants.
9C-Prepared his stake members better for emergencies and catastrophes.

(10)Elder Bednar told the story of Brigham Young. In 1861, while the Salt Lake Temple was under construction, Brigham Young encouraged the Saints: “If you wish this Temple built, go to work and do all you can. . . . Some say, ‘I do not like to do it, for

10A- “everytime we begin to build a temple, the bells of hell begin to ring:
10B- “everytime we begin to build a temple, persecution begins all around us.”
10C- “everytime we begin to build a temple, we have to give up our time and money to build it.”

Sacred Homes, Sacred Temples Elder Gary E. Stevenson
(11)Elder Stevenson told the story about his father, coming to his house in Logan, Utah to take him and his young sons for a ride in his truck. Our drive took us past the Logan Temple, and then we drove far into the country. Realizing his grandsons were in a place they had not been before, my father stopped the truck. “Do you think we are lost?” One of the boys made this profound reply:

11A-“Grandpa, I’m never lost when I’m with you.”
11B-Grandpa, you’re so smart, you would never get us lost.”
11C-“Grandpa, you are never lost when you can see the temple.”

(12)What is the total number of temples which have been dedicated or announced?
12A- 146 12B- 97 12C- 224 12D- 57

Gifts to Help us Navigate our Life Elder Jose A. Teixeira
(13)Elder Teixeira compared this to the Light of Christ and to the Gift of the Holy Ghost, because it can help answer these questions: . Where am I?Where am I going?What's the best way to get there?When will I get there?

13A-The Liahona
13B- A GPS receiver
13C- A map
13D- Google Maps

His Servants, the Prophets Elder F. Michael Watson of the Seventy(14)During his growing-up years in the small farming community, each summer he and his father herded sheep in the mountains. On one occasion it was so foggy they could not see their outstretched hands in front of them. His father suggested that I return to camp, and he would soon follow. Elder Watson remembers questioning how he would be able to find their camp in the thick fog. His father simply said,

14A-“Head toward the North Star and follow the creek and you will get there.”
14B-“Listen for the sheep bleating in the corral and you will get there.”
14C-“Head downhill, and turn at the second streambed, and you will get to camp.”
14D “Give the horse the reins, and he will get you to camp.”

Bring Souls unto Me Elder L. Tom Perry(15)Elder Perry told about driving and coming to a traffic jam caused by rescue vehicles. I was… curious—what was causing all the commotion? As I looked up the rock face along the east side of the entrance to Provo Canyon, I saw some men climbing. I assumed they were the search and rescue people. What were they climbing to?

15A- A hiker had fallen down the side of the mountain and was injured.
15B- A white sheep was stranded up on the rock face.
15C-An electrical line had become detached from its tower and was dangling into traffic.

(16)Elder Perry said that if we had the opportunity to open our mouths three times, what should we say to someone who knows nothing about our church?

Be of Good Cheer Pres. Thomas S. Monson(17)Pres. Monson told the story of a widowed LDS German woman living in Prussia at end of WWII. She was forced to go back to Germany, and had to travel 1000 miles on foot, with only a small wooden cart, taking her 4 young children.

17A.All four children died.
17B. Three of her children died, and she arrived with one child in Germany.
17C. Her two daughters died, and her two sons lived.

1A, 2D, 3B, 4B, 5C, 6A, 7C, 8B, 9B, 10A, 11C, 12A, 13B, 14D, 15B, 16-Jesus' Atonement, First Vision, Book of Mormon, 17A.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Some Easter Thoughts

I have always had a problem with the eggs and bunnies and chicks at Easter. We let our children hunt for eggs on Saturday before Easter but I really didn't do much decorating for it. I wanted, but couldn't find, decorations that commemorated Christ's atonement for us, his willingness to suffer for our sins and the great miracle of his resurrection. (But I didn't want crucifixes.) All the cutesy little baskets just don't symbolize Christ for me.

So here are some beautiful quotes which help me to remember my Savior at Easter:

And lo, he shall suffer temptations, and pain of body, hunger, thirst, and fatigue, even more than man can suffer, except it be unto death; for behold, blood cometh from every pore, so great shall be his anguish for the wickedness and the abominations of his people. Mosiah 3:7, Book of Mormon

For behold, I, God, have suffered these things for all, that they might not suffer if they would repent;
But if they would not repent they must suffer even as I;
Which suffering caused myself, even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit---and would that I might not drink the bitter cup, and shrink---
Nevertheless, glory be to the Father, and I partook and finished my preparations unto the children of men. Doctrine and Covenants 19:16-19

"The fundamental principles of our religion are the testimony of the Apostles and Prophets, concerning Jesus Christ, that He died, was buried, and rose again the third day, and ascended into heaven; and all other things which pertain to our religion are only appendages to it." Teaching of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 121.

"I do not wish to give offense to any of my Christian brethren who use the cross on the steeples of their cathedrals and at the altars of their chapels...But for us, the cross is the symbol of the dying Christ, while our message is a declaration of the living Christ." Gordon B. Hinckley

"I believe that our Heavenly Father wants to save every one of his children. I do not think he intends to shut any of us off...
...I believe that in his justice and mercy he will give us the maximum reward for our acts, give us all that he can give, and in the reverse, I believe that he will impose upon us the minimum penalty which it is possible for him to impose."
J. Reuben Clark, Conference Report, Oct. 1953, p. 84.

I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and that He loves me and he loves us all. Happy Easter!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Joseph Standing story

My mother recently wrote the following article for her ward newsletter, and I wanted my children to see it. Joseph Standing and Rutger Clawson were two missionaries in Georgia in the 1860's (or 1870's?). A mob killed Joseph Standing just a couple of months after he baptized my ancestors, the McDaniels and the Stovers. Rutger Clawson later became an apostle.

"My first ancestor converted to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was a second daughter, Lucy Belinda Osborne McDaniel born 1825:

Her second daughter was my great grandmother, Palestine Palmima McDaniel Stover born 1854:

Her second daughter was my grandmother, Martha Elizabeth Stover Shupe born 1875:

Her second daughter was my mother, Norma Shupe Clarkson born 1905:

Her second daughter was me, Christine Elizabeth Clarkson Kelly born 1930.

Each one of these righteous women has been an example to me of "How Faith Helped Them Overcome".

In 1879 Elder Joseph Standing left Salt Lake City on his second mission to Southern States Mission where he taught and baptized Lucy, Palestine and Cornelius (her husband) in Georgia. Two months later, this beloved elder was martyred by an angry mob.

Later, President John Taylor called the people from Georgia and Virginia to join the saints in Manassa, Colorado, where they lived the United Order and did all things possible to survive. The pioneers numbered less than 200 people and the amount of $400 was voluntarily paid into the common treasury. They were able to buy food, seeds for planting and cows for milk and butter. It was only by loving and serving each other that they survived, after having left all their worldly goods and their loved ones in the south.

The descendants of my grandmother, Martha Elizabeth Stover Shupe, now number over 1,000, nearly all of whom are faithful members of the Church. We have served over 243 missions so far and have gathered many thousands of family names and performed temple ordinances for most of our ancestors.

President Spencer W. Kimball gave this counsel in 1977, “I hope to see us dissolve the artificial boundary line we so often place between missionary work and temple and genealogical work because it is the same great redemptive work. For each name we extract from the records, we perform a sacred service, a missionary service. Whether for our own ancestors or some one else’s, we can open the doors to the holy temple and help join them with their families for eternity. We then can experience the joy of helping Heavenly Father with his living mission to all mankind.”

One day I was in the elevator and noticed a Family History Missionary with the name Elder Robert Standing on his badge. I asked if he was related to Elder Joseph Standing who was an early missionary in Georgia. He responded, "Yes, Joseph was my great uncle." I then explained that he had taught and baptized my ancestors.

A week later, I met with Elder Robert Standing and his wife, Lawrin, my sister Alice and her husband David Turley. We had an enjoyable time exchanging stories and pictures. Though Elder Standing was well aware of the circumstances surrounding his great uncle’s death, he acknowledged that he knew little of what success the missionaries had in sharing the gospel during that difficult and dangerous time in the Southern States.

He was pleased to learn that with the baptism of our McDaniel, Stover and other families, a branch was established in Georgia. Elder Joseph Standing was known as a "powerful preacher" and had been instrumental in the conversion of many others to the gospel. It was a joyous moment to share my gratitude for the blessings that have come to so many thousands of people because of the teachings of this great elder who faithfully served the Lord 130 years ago.

After being introduced to David Turley, Elder Standing asked if he knew of Theodore Turley, a Methodist minister who had been baptized in England by Elder Parley P. Pratt. In response, David acknowledged that he was his great-great grandfather. With delight, Elder Standing then told us that in 1837 Elder Theodore Turley was a missionary in Canada and had taught and baptized John Standing and his young son, James Standing.

What gratitude we feel for Elder Pratt who baptized Elder Turley who baptized James Standing, whose fourth son was Elder Joseph Standing who later baptized my ancestors and was martyred 2 months later. We realize that this was a miracle. Now we can better understand the great blessings that one person has made by sharing the gospel with another and how thousands and thousands of lives have been blessed eternally.

I am filled with gratitude for the dedication of many Latter-day Saint missionaries like Elder Theodore Turley who taught the gospel to many people in England and Canada and Joseph Standing who gave his life that my ancestors could be taught the gospel, also for my 243 family members who have served missions. I am also thankful for the many who have taught the gospel by example to their families and neighbors and and for the temple work that has been done for the dead during the past 130 years.

I have heart felt love that my ancestors have taught their families the true gospel, now we have 8 generations of Latter-day Saints. The greatest happiness and joy in my life comes from knowing that my 6 children, 25 grandchildren and 11 great grandchildren each have the knowledge that we have a living prophet, President Thomas S. Monson and that the Church of Jesus Christ has been restored to the earth.

My goal is eternal life in God’s kingdom at our BIG FAMILY REUNION with our loved ones all together.

By Christine Kelly

Friday, April 10, 2009


Here are some church bulletins that Tara and Zac turned into origami during sacrament meeting. They make these all the time. (Click on photo to make it bigger.)

I taught them how to fold it a few years ago. I learned to make this in math class in the 6th grade; I don't know why our teacher taught us, but she did. Its the only origami I know, but it looks absolutely impressive.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

New Quilts made by Tara and Amy

Tara finally finished this quilt, she started it more than 3 years ago. She started off trying to make a twin-sized quilt for her bed, but when she got this much done she decided to make it a baby quilt instead. It was one of her Values projects for her Personal Progress award. We wouldn't let her get her driver's license until she finished doing Personal Progress, so under duress she finally finished it last week.

This is a little scrap quilt top (41" x 41") I finished during General Conference (I am terrible, I love to sew while I listen to General conference on TV). It is made of all scraps, so there are some really cute fabrics in there.

There are a couple of the big triangles which have bugs on them, and a couple that have cupcakes on them, so I named the quilt "Bugs and Cupcakes". This quilt top goes in my pile "to be finished for future grandchildren".

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Websites: Food Storage, Pandemic

I found two excellent websites about food storage. The first is called Food Storage Made Easy, written by Jodi and Julie. Check it out.

One of their posts that I really liked was entitled "Lies about Long Term Food Storage Debunked!!" You can find it by clicking HERE.

The next website is one that tells you how long the shelf life is for all different foods, including the ones opened in your fridge. The website is called StillTasty.

Also, I know I have already given a bunch of information on preparing for the bird flu pandemic, but I forgot to put any information on those posts about what our church is doing about it. So I thought I would give you the website on that so you can see I'm not a total looney.

Click HERE to see what is on the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint's website about pandemic preparation.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Non-Fiction Books I Really Liked


Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers by Mary Roach. Very interesting! Has chapters about forensics, organ transplants, embalming, everything you've ever been curious about. But don't read the "Cannibalism" chapter, that one went too far, I didn't want to know that stuff.

Rubble: Unearthing the History of Demolition- by Jeff Byles. It is amazing the way they tear down old buildings, or implode huge stadiums. I was sad to read about the beautiful and historic buildings that were demolished before all the historical societies starting throwing a fit about it and making laws to protect them.

Emperors of Chocolate- by Joel Glenn Brenner (the competition between Hershey and Mars corporations)

Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping- by Paco Underhill. It talks about how they arrange stores so that you will buy more, how they get your attention with special displays and signs, how they price things, etc.

The Call of the Mall- by Paco Underhill. Another book about how we buy things.

Catch Me if You Can- by Frank Abagnale Jr. I liked the movie, and this is the true book the movie was based on.

Guns of August (about World War I) and The First Salute (about Revolutionary War) both by Barbara Tuchman. She has an excellent way of writing about history that makes it as interesting as a novel. Her other books are good too.


Somme- by Lyn Macdonald

They Called it Passchendale- by Lyn Macdonald


The Hiding Place- by Corrie Ten Boom

Winston Churchill’s eight (?) volume set, History of World War II. (I have to admit this wasn't actually "enjoyable" but I challenged myself to read it and I have read all but the last volume. Every volume is about 800 pages.)


The Edge of Disaster- by Stephen Flynn
America the Vulnerable- by Stephen Flynn

The Unthinkable: Who Survives when Disaster strikes and why- by Amanda Ripley (See my lengthy book review of this book in my blog Aug. 6, 2008)


Curse of the Narrows- by Laura M. MacDonald (Dec. 6, 1917 Halifax Explosion) This was the largest accidental manmade explosion in history, and wiped out a whole town.

The Day the World Came to Town: 9/11 in Gander, Newfoundland- by Jim Defede (see my lengthy book review of this book in my blog Nov. 23, 2008).

The Year of the Great Crash: 1929 by William K. Klingaman


Collaborative Quilting- by Gwen Marston and Freddy Moran

Liberated Quiltmaking- by Gwen Marston

Freddy's Houses- by Freddy Moran

Monday, April 6, 2009

Some Fun Books


The Know-it-all- One Man's Humble Quest to Become the Smartest Person in the World by A.J. Jacobs (this was the most enjoyable book I have read in the past several years)

The Year of Living Biblically: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible- A.J. Jacobs. Good, too, and it was especially meaningful to read while I was teaching the Old Testament in seminary.


All Douglas Adams' books: Hitchhikers' Guide to the Galaxy, Restaurant at the End of the Universe, Life, the Universe, and Everything, So Long and Thanks for all the Fish. I like the movie "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy", I'm pretty sure it has parts taken from all the books. (Wayne hated the books).

Princess Bride by William Goldman, very different than the movie.


Patrick McManus books. He write humorous articles about camping, hunting, fishing, for outdoorsy magazines. I bought his books for my dad for Christmas for several years. My favorite short story of all time "Blood Sausage" in his book Real Ponies Don't Go Oink.

My other favorite short story of all time is "Roman Fever", I don't know who wrote it.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Kid's and Teen's Books

I read entirely too much as a child. During recess I laid on the sidewalk during recess and read the whole time, I can remember my fourth grade teacher trying to convince me that I should run and play.

Here are some of my favorite books from when I was younger. I read a bunch of these aloud to my own children.


Harriet the Spy- my very favorite novel when I was young. Because of Harriet, I started keeping a diary and have kept one ever since. Haven't missed a day since 1971.

Miss Hickory- Carolyn Sherwin Bailey

The Borrowers series- Mary Norton

Winnie the Pooh series- A.A. Milne

Johnny Tremain- Esther Forbes

Across Five Aprils- Irene Hunt

Pippi Longstocking series- Lindgren

Mrs. Piggle Wiggle series- Macdonald

Hitty- Rachel Field

Oz series- L. Frank Baum

Tennis Shoes among the Nephites- Chris Heimerdinger (I read it when I was an adult)

Little House series- Laura Ingalls Wilder

Little Women, Little Men, Jo’s Boys, etc. by Louisa May Alcott


The Outsiders- S.E. Hinton

The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings Trilogy- J.R.R. Tolkien

Roots- Alex Haley

Gone with the Wind- Margaret Mitchell. (I read a sequel, Scarlett by Alexandra Ripley, and didn’t like it much.)

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Categories of Books I've Read


The House on the Strand- Daphne duMaurier

Harry Potter series- J.K. Rowling

High Road to China

Paper Moon (also called "Addie Pray")

A Lantern in Her Hand- Bess Streeter Aldrich. (She also wrote White Bird Flying, which I enjoyed, and Spring Came on Forever, which I didn't like.)

Sense and Sensibility- Jane Austen

Cold Sassy Tree- Olive Ann Burns

Red Sky at Morning

GUILTY PLEASURES (I shouldn't tell you that I liked these books)
Sweet Potato Queens series- Jill Conner Browne

MOST DEPRESSING BOOKS I HAVE EVER READ- Things in them still bother me today when I think of them.

The Living- Annie Dillard (early settlement of Washington State)

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court- Mark Twain. Written in his cynical later years, he includes the very worst vile practices of the Middle Ages, it broke my heart to read of the tortures and imprisonments and diseases. Not a fun book.

Joy Luck Club- Amy Tan.

Divine Secrets of the YaYa Sisterhood- Rebecca Wells.

James Michener books- I don't know why I keep reading them. Carribean, Centennial, Poland- they all contain some of the worst things I have ever read.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Book Characters That Became My Friends

I went back through my diaries since 1982 and looked at all the books I have read. These are the books where the characters still stick in my head.

Author Belva Plain- I have read several books by her, she has great characters, but they are not "feel good" books, they usually have a sad ending.

Author Anne Tyler- These are good for an airplane trip, I know the characters will be interesting, but again, they are usually a bit depressing. I've read Saint Maybe, Ladder of Years, Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant, Breathing Lessons, Accidental Tourist.

Miss Julia series by Ann B. Ross. These are mystery books about a southern 60 yr old busybody. These are great fun, I usually laugh out loud a couple of times per book because of her pickiness and the way she is so uppity and judgmental to everyone she knows in her town. Be sure to read them in the correct order.(I really dislike mystery books, but these are more novels than mysteries.)

A Woman of Independent Means- Elizabeth Forsythe Hailey. The whole thing consists of her letters to various people. You get to know her only by what she writes, you can't tell what the other people are thinking.

Lucia, Lucia by Adriana Trigiani. I've only read one book by Trigiani, but I can't wait to read another one. Lucia is so likable, she is a dressmaker in the 1950's, and highly involved with the fashion world. (The author described each piece of clothing Lucia worked on, so I was constantly picturing "Grace Kelly" type dresses.)

And Ladies of the Club- Helen Hooven Santmyer. The biggest novel I have ever read, I think it had over 1000 pages, it was massive. This novel pretty much ruined me in the fall of 1986. I had a 4 yr old, a 3 yr old, and a 1 yr old, and I started reading this book and I read it every minute I could from Sept. 13-Oct. 3. I fed the kids and changed them but don't think I paid much attention to them because I was so hooked on this novel.

When I got done, I vowed to never read another novel until my kids were much bigger. I limited myself to non-fiction for years, because of how I couldn't put down "And Ladies of the Club".

This book is SO BIG and covers the lives of two girls from their teens until they are old ladies. It starts just after the Civil War, and goes through all their childrearing years and their marriages (both happy and sad) and through their grandchildren's marriages and children.

I had to make a notebook and take notes on each character to be able to keep track of everyone and to remember who was related to who. But I still think of those characters today, I know them so well they are still part of my life.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

General Conference Coming Up

I really love General Conference weekend (this one will be April 4-5, 2009). That is when the leadership of our church speaks to the whole church (via radio, TV, computer) during three meetings on Saturday and two meetings on Sunday. This happens the first weekend in April and the first weekend in October.

They speak from the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, it is one of the largest buildings of its kind in the world, I think it holds an audience of 21,000. Conference used to be held in the Tabernacle, but we have grown out of that.

We don't have regular church meetings on Conference Sunday, but we can go to our church buildings and watch the meeting from Salt Lake on satellite. Or, we can watch it on cable TV or on BYU-TV on satellite at home, or we can listen to it on the computer at

Here in North Carolina it is on from 12noon-2pm and 4pm-6pm on Saturday, and from 12noon-2pm and 4pm-6pm on Sunday. The men also go to church buildings to watch General Priesthood meeting by satellite on Saturday evening, that isn't carried on cable or home satellite.

Women have a similar meeting, called General Relief Society, which happens on a Saturday night in September, which is also broadcast worldwide.

The reason I am telling you this, is that I want to invite any of you that have never seen our church's General Conference before, to watch it and see what you think. We truly believe that we have a living prophet and apostles on the earth today, and they are inspired by God to lead the people of this world. Listen to what they say and see if you agree.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

April Fool's tricks

When I was young, we lived on 60 acres outside of Bartlesville, Oklahoma. My dad had horses, and there were usually a couple of pregnant mares in the spring. Every year, my mom would tell my dad on April Fool's day, "There's a new colt out in the field" and he would go look for it.

Brother Godfrey's family said that when he was in the stake presidency, he woke all his family up early in the morning and said there had been an announcement that they all had to evacuate and travel to Missouri. They all packed up their stuff and got in the car before he told them it was April Fool's.

In our family, we have never done any great April Fool's jokes, the only one I can remember was when Bryce (or Zac?) put a rubber band around the kitchen sprayer and aimed it just right, so when Wayne turned on the kitchen faucet it sprayed him full blast in the chest. When Bryce started laughing, Wayne grabbed him and gave him a nice tight hug so Bryce got all wet from Wayne's sopping wet shirt.

I would love to hear other people's April Fool's jokes.