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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Chocolate Desert "Happiness"!!! / Warm Chocolate Melting Cake

From 
"The Happiness Project
Activity


Warm Chocolate Melting Cake

8 oz semisweet chocolate
1 cup butter (2 sticks)
7 eggs, (divided use)
6 Tbs sugar
1/2 cup flour

Heat oven to 375 degrees....

Melt chocolate and butter....cool for 10 minutes

In a separate bowl, whisk 4 eggs with sugar....

Add flour.....whisk.....

Add remaining 3 eggs.....

Add egg mixture to chocolate mixture.

Pour into greased ramekins (small oven safe bowls)

Bake until outside starts to cook (it will start to look dull), but center is still shiny.  
This takes approximately 10-15 minutes.

*Watch the cooking closely so you don't over cook them. Every oven varies. 

Take out of the oven and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Serve immediately with vanilla  the  ice cream.  (Vanilla bean is the favorite)     YUM!!!


Sunday, February 26, 2012

Book of Mormon Class


Each  and every member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints bears a personal responsibility to learn and live truths of the Savior's restored gospel and to receive by proper authority ordinances for salvation.  We should not expect the Church as an organization to teach or tell us all the things we need to know and do to become devoted disciples and endure valiantly to the end. D&C 121:29


Our individual responsibility is to learn what we should learn, to live as we know we should live, and to become what the master would have us become.


President Hinckley said, "We must go on growing. We must continuously learn. It is a divinely given mandate that we go on adding to our knowledge".


Each of these approaches can help satisfy our spiritual thirst, if we invite the companionship and assistance of the Holy Ghost as we read, study and search.
1)  Read the scriptures straight through from start to
     end.
2)  Study by topic.
3)  Pray always.
4)  Search the scriptures.


Ask yourself these questions as you do these things;
  • Because the glory of God is intelligence, what can and should I do to increase my own intelligence?
  • How will understanding and effectively fulfilling my individual responsibility as a learner prepare me for the world in which I do now and will yet live?

It is my prayer that after your tribulations, if you do these things and exercise fervent prayer and faith in the sight of God; 
always He will give unto you knowledge through personal revelation by his Holy Spirit,  the unspeakable gift of the Holy Ghost. 
 

I leave my testimony with you.
Love, Sister Sue G.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Happiness Project Activity

Our Activity was based primarily on 
"The Happiness Project" book 
by Gretchen Ruben.

She states four splendid truths for Happiness:
  • First:  To be happier, you have to think about feeling good, feeling bad, and feeling right, in an atmosphere of growth.
  • Second:  One of the best ways to make yourself happy, is to make other people happy; One of the best ways to make other people happy is to be happy yourself.
  • Third:  The days are long, but the years are short. (Life goes by quickly, enjoy the moments.) 
  • Fourth:  You're not happy unless you think you're happy. (Act the way you want to feel.)


We decided to focus the night on three things; "One Sentence Journals", "Lists", and "A Yearly Focus Word". The first two come from the book. We also gave out a handout that outlined the steps given in the book for starting your own happiness project. 

Sue started out telling us about 
"One Sentence Journals"
She said, "Everyone can write one sentence. There is nothing overwhelming about that".  If we write just one sentence a day it can help us to see what things make us happy. It helps us amplify the effect of a happy experience by giving the opportunity of expressing and recalling your feelings. It will solidifiy the experience and those feelings. Each time you go back and read them the feelings and the happiness they gave grows even stronger and deeper. 


Everyone received a cute as all get out,  
"HAPPINESS PROJECT JOURNAL"
Each one unique, hand made by the RS activity committee!


Andrea then told us about the 
importance of keeping "Lists".
*Your Happiness Journal is a good place to keep these!


You can keep all kinds of lists to help you with your happiness.
The first lists to make are the areas you want to work on to boost your happiness.
A second list might be things that make you unhappy that you would want to avoid as much as possible.
She told us how the author made a list of her own personal 12 commandments to help in her project for happiness.

They are:
                  1.   Be Gretchen (be yourself)
                  2.   Let it go
                  3.   Act the way I want to feel
                  4.   Do it now
                  5.   Be polite and be fair
                  6.   Enjoy the process
                  7.   Spend out
                  8.   Identify the problem
                  9.   Lighten up
                  10. Do what ought to be done
                  11. No calculation
                  12. There is only Love.

She also listed more than forty more list ideas on the handout. 

A few of them are:
Thankful list
Women who inspire me
To do
Things to try
Books to read
Things I want people to remember about me
Things I don't want people to remember about me
De-clutter projects
Life goals
What I love

Another list from the book was what the author called her "Secrets of Adulthood". They were lessons learned growing up that help with happiness.

A few of them were:
  • People don't notice your mistakes as much as you think.
  • It's okay to ask for help
  • By doing a little bit each day, you can get a lot accomplished.
  • Do good, feel good
  • You don't have to be good at everything
  • An "evening tidy-up" makes the next day better
  • People actually prefer that you buy wedding gifts off their registry
  • Don't let the perfect become the enemy of the good

Sydney then told us about the idea of picking a 
"One Word Focus" for the year.


In the book Gretchen picks 12 areas she wants to work on, one for each month. They were; Vitality, Marriage, Work, Parenthood, Leisure, Friendship, Money, Eternity, Books, Mindfulness, Attitude, and Happiness. She then lists three to five specific ways she is going to try to boost happiness in those areas. 

We wanted to add the idea of picking one word to use as your main focus for the year to help you choose the areas that you want to work on. Then you are to display that word prominently in your house as a daily reminder.

We gave out a list of almost 300 word ideas some of which were: accept, achieve, appreciate, balance, believe, calm, 
change, cherish, delight, hope, eliminate, enjoy, order, relish, 
restore, service, simplify, thankful.


We each had a poster paper, we put our chosen word on it then had a blast looking through magazines for pictures that represented that word and the areas it brought to mind that we 
wanted to work on. 



Hum....pondering the possibilities!


There was lots of cutting and glueing 
amidst all the great chatting and laughing!



Look how fun they turn out!



"CHERISH" is Terry S's focus word. 
Don't you just love some of the cherish topics she picked!!
"Embrace your age", "Peanut butter and chocolate chip cookie dough".... YES!!



To top the evening off we had Chocolate Melting Cake 
with Nelson's frozen custard on top!
YUM .... Happy Happy....Yum!


*If anyone wasn't able to attend and wants a copy of the handout with more detailed instructions on how to do your own happiness project, leave a comment at the bottom of this post, or ask Sue G. or a member of the RS Presidency.

*Be watching......We will be highlighting some of our sister's posters, where they chose to display them in their home and why they chose their word.

We encourage all of you who weren't able to attend to choose a focus word, make some lists, starting with a list of areas to work on for your happiness, set some simple concrete goals and start your own happiness project. Be sure to keep a one line journal along the way!! 
* This could very well bleed into more than one line and become a great way to keep your personal history journal!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

'Make It A Great Day Cafe'

Stake Women's Conference

Stake Women's Conference this year was focused on finding and creating joy. It it so interesting that the Stake would be inspired to focus on 'Joy' at the first of this year and we were inspired to focus on 'Happiness' which is one and the same thing! This is truly a great need we have to reach our full potential here on this Earth. "Men are that they might have joy."  Research shows that happy, joyful people are more altruistic, more productive, more helpful, more likable, more creative, more resilient, are healthier,more interested in others, friendlier and serve more. Happy people make better friends, colleagues, and citizens. These attributes help us to have Charity the Love of Christ, bringing us closer to our Heavenly Father.


MAKE~IT~A~GREAT~DAY~CAFE

Finally!!! A diner that all will enjoy!  Open twenty four hours a day, seven days a week.  Even the most finicky palette will find their favorite dish in this warm and inviting 
Make-It-A-Great-Day -Cafe!
Offering down-home, "feel good" food is the motto for this diner.  Customers seeking joy will find that their appetites will be pleased and satisfied with the vast array of selections available to them.  Don't wait, dine today and create your own plate!

"Life is a fabulous feast of experiences just waiting for you to choose and explore. The best feast is at the table of the Lord. What is on the Lord's table? Love, good fun, uplifting music, peaceful prayer, scriptures, smiles, learning and service to other. That is where eternal joy can be found."
~Michaelene P. Grassli "follow Him." Friend ~



Points shared for finding JOY:

* Keep a "JOY" Journal and declare "A Day of Joy".  
  • Do what makes you feel good, useful, and fulfilled.
  • Make and refer to a list of "simple joys".
  • Save unpleasant tasks, difficult people, and negative thoughts for tomorrow.

When we expect the best, it is amazing how forces are set in motion to create the best in our lives.

*Keep the rough "Moments" in your life in perspective by:
     1) Keeping the spirit close. Memorize a scripture to uplift and encourage yourself in times of need.
     2) Don't blame yourself for perceived shortcomings as a mother - Heavenly Father gives us all strengths and weaknessess. Mothers are not personally responsible for all their children's weaknesses.
     3) Remember we are all in this together: Comparisons (to another person) can destroy our joy. We can't be grateful and envious at the same time. Comparison's ugly sister is judging. We are all "perfectly imperfect".

*Some seek happiness, others create it.
"This is the day the LORD has made; let us be glad and have joy in it"  Psalms 118:24

     1) Choose joy daily.
     2) Reach out and show love to others.
     3) We can find joy even in times of trouble.
     4) Realize who we are and how Heavenly Father
         feels about us.

* Recognize the tender mercies in our days.
   Choose to receive love and gifts of others.
   Be proactive in finding happiness.
   It's okay to ask for help.
   We need our girlfriends!

President Strong closed the Conference telling us there are 
Three things necessary for true faith, or true joy:

1) To know that Heavenly Father exists.
2) To understand His attributes and purposes.
3) To know that the path you are pursuing is in 
    harmony with His will.

He gave an amazing talk reminding us to stay on the straight and narrow path. 

He said the path is defined broadly for us by our covenants and that Heavenly Father will personalize the steps that each of us take on that path.  These steps are not the same for all of us. We are all on different places along the path, and there are differences in how we go along the path at our own paces. When we compare ourselves to others we take Heavenly Father's personal ministry to each of us out of the equation. The plan of salvation is not a plan of self-deprecation. Respond positively to promptings to make changes in your life. We are meant to learn step upon step precept by precept. Have the flexibility and generosity to allow others to be individually tutored (along the path) by Heavenly Father. 


He shared a touching personal story about his Parents being in a car accident while on their way to the Temple in which his mother lost her life. It involved several vehicles leaving massive destruction. The medic on the scene shared his feelings of finding peace among chaos upon finding President Strong's parents. He said to find them in the midst of all that was going on, there with their Temple bags in back, holding hands was a feeling of peace. They were, as President Strong put it, on the "Straight and narrow path"


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

COMING UP......

2 Nephi 2:25 ....and men are, that they might have 
JOY!


Our up and coming 
Relief Society Activity is:


There is no duty we so much underrate as the 
duty of being happy.
~Robert Louis Stevenson~

Who couldn't benefit from a boost in Happiness?

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, 
that they are endowed by their Creator with certain 
unalienable rights
that among these are 
life, liberty and the 
pursuit of happiness.

We will be discussing ideas from this book by
Gretchen Rubin and doing some fun activities to get you started on boosting your happiness level with your own 
'HappiNess Project'! 


Come out and join us! 
Bring your neighbors and your sister's you visit teach!

Thursday, February 16th
7:00pm @ The Church House
*Nursery for those in need will be provided

This will be a great evening of fun and enlightenment!

We have a Happy Gift for all who come and of course to top the happy meter... there will be Chocolate
A smooth tasty luxury that is a happy spot all in and of itself!!




Saturday, February 11, 2012

'Daughters In My Kingdom'

The History and Work of Relief Society
Taught by Terry S.




As my basement flooded a few weeks ago and I was home alone, I panicked! Feeling pretty helpless, I called my son Luke to come and help me.  He ran right over and found me in the window well bailing out the water. He asked why I didn't put the pump down in there to pump the water out.  I tried, I said, but it was stuck in ice and I couldn't get it out.  Well he just walked over and pulled it right out without much trouble at all and then said, "Boy, I would hate to be a woman."  I told him sometimes I hate it too.


In trying to get the Relief Society sisters and myself interested in reading "The History and Work of the Relief society", I decided to read it myself and give a lesson on the things I learned from it.  I chose some of the things that were interesting to me and that I thought others might also find interesting.


The very first thing I read was a quote by James E. Talmage.  He said, "The world's greatest champion of woman and womanhood is Jesus the Christ."  Even in excruciating pain on the cross, the Savior expressed concern for His mother, who by then was very likely a widow in need of watch care.  And, the first person to whom He appeared after His Resurrection was a woman. 
(page 3)


In 1842 the Saints in Nauvoo were busy building the Temple and women sought ways to contribute. (Read page 11) Initially membership in the society was not automatic for all female members of the church.  Women had to petition to belong.  They were accepted based on their goodness and virtue.


In February of 1846 the exodus from Nauvoo to the Salt Lake Valley began.  The formal organization of the Relief Society was discontinued. (Read page 31-34).  Though the sisters never lost sight of the institution, nor the promises made to them by President Joseph Smith but continued their work whenever and wherever an opportunity presented itself.  Relief Society was reestablished in the late 1860's. (Read pages 46-48)



President Kimball emphasized that visiting teachers need complete commitment and dedication.  He said, "Your duties are to watch over the church always~ not a knock at the door, but to be with them and lift them and strengthen them, and empower them, and fortify them,... and see that there is no iniquity,...neither hardness,... backbiting, nor evil speaking. (page 114)


There are so many good things in this book, I can't mention all of them.  You will have to read it for yourself.


I'll end with a quote from President Henry B. Eyring, 

"True chastity is the legacy of Relief Society ... why do we go visiting teaching?  Why do we take meals in?  Why do we visit and pray for our sisters who are sick or struggling?  Out of gratitude for His atonement, His infinite gift of mercy.  

And on page 179, President Joseph F. Smith urged Latter-day women to, 

"Lead the world and to lead especially women of the world, in everything that is praise-worthy, everything that is God-like, everything that is uplifting and that is purifying... You are called by the voice of the Prophet of God to do it, to be uppermost, to be the greatest and the best, the purest and the most devoted to the right."



Thursday, February 9, 2012

Family Home Evening Ideas

Worth Waiting For:



Here's a great twist on the Stanford Marshmallow Experiment!
Food for thought for a family night object lesson.
Also a moment to make you smile....
Kids are So Cute & Funny!


For those of you who didn't see the Stanford Marshmallow Experiment Video in Relief Society last year
you can view it here: 

The Stanford marshmallow experiment was a study on deferred gratification conducted in 1972 by psychologist Walter Mischel of Stanford University. A marshmallow was offered to each child. If the child could resist eating the marshmallow, he was promised two instead of one.  The scientists analyzed how long each child resisted the temptation of eating the marshmallow, and whether or not doing so had an effect on their future success.

President Uchtdorf used this example in his conference talk 'Continue in Patience', April 2010 



Monday, February 6, 2012

Book of Mormon Class

The Atonement
Alma 7
Taught by Karen P.


If you hold on to a rope and twirl it then let go, what happens? 
The rope goes flying off doing it's own thing, no longer connected to it's centrical base.


Christ and his atonement represent the center...if the center lets go...what happens to the rest of the plan?


Joseph Smith taught that "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"


Elder Boyd K. Packer said: "Truth, glorious truth, proclaims there is...a Mediator...Through Him mercy can be fully extended to each of us without offending the eternal law of justice.  This truth is the very root of Christian doctrine.  You may know much about the gospel as it branches out from there, but if you only know the branches and those branches do not touch that root, if they have been cut free from that truth, there will be no life nor substance nor redemption in them."


"Imagine, Jehovah, the Creator of this and other worlds, 'astonished'!  Jesus knew cognitively what He must do, but not experientially.  He had never personally known the exquisite and exacting process of an atonement before.  thus, when the agony came into its fullness, it was so much, much worse than even He with his unique intellect had ever imagined!  No wonder an angel appeared to strengthen Him! (Luke 22:43)


"The cumulative weight of all mortal sins-past, present, and future-pressed upon that perfect, sinless, and sensitive Soul!  All our infirmities and sicknesses were somehow, too, a part of the awful arithmetic of the Atonement" (Ensign, May 1985,78-73).


What is Alma's challenge to how we can take advantage of this great Atonement and receive its promises?  


"Yea, I say unto you come and fear not, and lay aside every sin, which easily doth beset you, which doth bind you down to destruction, yea, come and go forth, and show unto your God that ye are willing to repent of your sins and enter into a covenant with him to keep his commandments, and witness it unto him this day.... And whoseoever doeth this, .... he shall have eternal life, according to the testimony of the Holy Spirit, which testifieth in me." (Alma 7:15-16)


Take this Challenge:  Read the sacramental prayers each week with great feeling and understanding of the sacrifice made for us... bringing a broken spirit and a contrite heart to the table...that we may always have His spirit to be with us and claim the blessings of eternal life. 







*NoTe..... Unbelivable I know!! Sue G is going to resume teaching the Book of Mormon class this month! We are soooo happy for her!!  Class will be held at her house instead of Karen P's as listed on February's calander.

~On behalf of the Presidency and Willow Wood Ward Women, we want to whole heart idly thank Karen for her wonderful job of filling in during Sue's absence.~