Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Amazing People

Recently, I finished reading two books about people who are inspiring and amazing. These two individuals were just human beings but what made them great was the love they had for others and how they showed that love. Their lives were great because of how they chose to do the things they did.

The first book was Glimpses into the Life and Hear of Marjorie Pay Hinckley which is a compilation of Sister Hinckley's own words as well as those of friends, acquaintances, and family members. These recollections allowed me as an outsider to really see what Sister Hinckley was like as a person. They showed her as a real person with an extraordinary ability to show love and kindness to everyone with who she came in contact. I felt inspired by her positive attitude, faith in the Gospel, and the personal touch she gave to loved ones and strangers alike.

The second book was Three Cups of Tea which is about a man named Greg Mortensen, who after suffering personal loss decides to help the impoverished people of Pakistan build schools. He accomplished this by much personal sacrifice - the kind of sacrifice most people would not be willing to do. The way he worked with the people demonstrated that each culture has its own way of doing things and that when we respect other cultures, they respond. I enjoyed not just the story of this man's journey in fulfilling his promises to the people in the remote part of northern Pakistan but also the understanding of what life is like and who the people are on the other side of the world. This book shows that peace in the world can be achieved more effectively through education than military action.

After reading these books, I wondered to myself if I could do what these people did. What would I be willing to sacrifice for the people I love, let alone those I've never met, whose language I do not speak? Am I content to sit in the comfort of my own home and focus on my daily activities while the world passed me by? I know that what I'm doing everyday for my family and the people around me is important. However, am I willing to stretch beyond my boundaries and give more of myself? Would I be willing to work at a job knowing that most of my paycheck will go toward a cause that wouldn't benefit me or my family as Greg Mortensen did? Would I be willing to patiently endure while my husband spent most of his life traveling and attending to the affairs of the Kingdom of God as Sister Hinckley did?

Well, my path is not the same as Sister Hinckley's or Greg Mortensen's. I know that each of us has our own path in life and that the important thing is to do our best with what we have. I hope that I can be just as willing as these people in offering of myself in whatever mission is mine to accomplish in life. For me, that may be doing yet another load of laundry without grumbling or substituting (for the third time in a month) in primary without wishing I could attend Relief Society instead. Or, getting through a day without yelling at my children...but with showing patience and love.

Monday, April 5, 2010


We've enjoyed a wonderful Easter weekend. It was General Conference weekend so we reveled in the fact that we could stay home and watch it on TV. We made breakfast on both days - waffles on Saturday and pancakes on Sunday. We were able to watch all the sessions except the one on Saturday afternoon and the kids behaved relatively well which was great! The kids loved looking for the things the Easter Bunny brought and hid for them. They also loved the gifts Grandma Schmidt sent in the mail.

We've decided on a new family tradition: watching a family movie with popcorn. We did it on both Friday and Saturday evenings, we started a movie and continued to watch it the next evening. We're still not done with the movie... The popcorn did not last long as you can imagine.

After an Easter feast, we finally dyed some Easter eggs. A great end to a great weekend!