I enjoyed watching Olivia thoroughly and completely enjoy doing her artwork. As you can tell, it's a real "hands on" process for her. I enjoy seeing her creativity and talent develop each time. Thank goodness for "washable" paint.
This little leaf was the last of his kind hanging onto this tree. Amongst all the harsh cold, snow and bare branches, he stood out to me. I was impressed by his show of endurance and strength. I was reminded to be as strong in my personal trials.
We had the opportunity to let Olivia act out the nativity scene with some of her cousins on Christmas eve. We had talked with Olivia previously and had told her the story so she would be familiar with it. Once we started reading and acting it out, she was very attentive and eager to act her part perfectly. It touched my heart to see my little girl play the part of Mary. She lovingly held baby Jesus so carefully. She told me afterwards, "Mom, I got to be Mary. I love baby Jesus so much! That was so fun!" What a great memory for her and a great way to teach our kids the true meaning of Christmas.
My heart is still happy from our trip to temple square. I'm grateful for the fond memories Olivia is garnering in her childhood. She told me "I can't wait to go back to the temple and next time, I want to go inside!" I'm glad she has set that goal in her life. I want to make sure she sees it fulfilled.
I'm grateful for the light of Christ. As I celebrate His birth this week, I'm going to focus more on His love and the gift of His life. I hope I can share His light and love with my little family so that my girls will recognize and KNOW the true reason we celebrate Christmas.
I'm grateful for Christmas traditions. New and old. We started a new family tradition by taking the girls to the Ogden city lights. This is also an old tradition because while growing up, my family used to go each year. Seeing the lights and the displays brought back so many memories. I hope my girls have as fond of memories as I do when they grow up. I'm grateful for our time together as a family.
Evergreen trees. Always faithful and true. They stand as a reminder to me to be true to myself. To hold onto my values and the virtues I was raised with, and to not lose them just because the seasons of my life change. I need to remain as faithful to my true colors as the evergreen.
I love a good game of Peek-a-Boo! I especially am loving the game with this little tease. It's her favorite thing to do as of late, and we get to play at every meal time. I love how she will "peek" out of her hands to make sure I'm watching. As soon as she catches my eye, she starts grinning. She is so adorable!
Brad and Olivia had their very first Daddy Daughter Date on Saturday. I took this picture just before they left. Brad took her to her very first movie in a theater. They saw "The Princess and The Frog." I was so excited for her. I knew she'd love the big screen, and according to the reports afterwards, I was right. "Mom! It was even BIGGER than Daddy! It was amazing!"
I'm grateful for a loving partner in my life who loves his girls so well and who treats his daughters so amazingly. I hope this is the beginning of a new tradition with Brad and his daughters. It was fun to witness her excitement and the joy she received from time with her daddy.
Since I've started really getting into photography a couple months ago, I've learned a lot about myself and life. I've learned to trust my first instinct. I've learned that I like the solitude found while taking photos. I've learned that a picture really can be worth a thousand words. I've learned that if we magnify the talents we've been given, we truly can be better at them. Taking pictures is therapeutic to me. I've learned that I look at the world differently... everything has the potential to be an amazing photograph if looked at the right way. I've learned that I truly LOVE photography. So, thank you to Brad for allowing me the opportunity and for buying me an amazing camera. And Thank You to my Heavenly Father for placing in me a talent I'm trying to develop and magnify.
I have posted these two pictures today because I'm was reminded that life is about perspective. These two pictures are taken from the same position on my back porch. I just lowered my camera a little bit for the second picture. I love the little heart shape of light shining through the leaves on the second picture. So... if you need to find a little love or happiness in your life, try changing your perspective. I bet it will work.
Old Man Winter has finally arrived and decided to stay I think. As I watched the snow fall yesterday I had mixed emotions. I'm grateful for the beauty of the fresh snow, the water it will give us next year and the chance to have a white Christmas. But, I am not a lover of the cold or of driving in snow. When it snows, I become even more of a homebody. I watched Olivia play in the knee deep snow and love every minute of it. I decided that's one more reason to be grateful for it. The joy it brings to my daughter and so many other children. I can also be grateful that the snow is only here for a few months of the year and that I don't live at the North Pole.
Olivia wanted me to take a picture of Jesus today. "Look Mom, He's happy! I hope He loves me!" I quickly assured her that, "Yes Olivia, Jesus loves you very very much. I think you make Him very happy." I want to make sure that every day I am doing my best to make Jesus happy also.
Tis the Season! I'm in love with the Holiday season. I love the good it brings out in everyone. I love the excitement in my daughter's eyes. I love hearing Olivia sing that song. It's her favorite right now. I love the REASON for the season. Remember the true reason this season and it'll make your holiday even better.
I had the opportunity to take pictures of some good friends today. This is one of their daughters. She's curious, adventurous, fearless and a total riot to take pictures of. I enjoyed the laughter that came with today's photo shoot. Laughter is good medicine for the soul, and kids are a great way to find that medicine.
Do you know anyone who's light seems to have gone out? I think we've all been there at one time or another. If you know someone who's light has been extinguished, please reach out to them today... NOW. Let's turn their lights back on. No one likes being in the dark.
For those of you who live by me... Did you know this little imprint is in the concrete work at the Bountiful Temple? Have any of you ever seen it before? I absolutely love it. I'm convinced it was an accidental impression, but I'm so glad the construction workers didn't smooth it out. It's just one more small detail that makes that temple so beautiful to me. Look for the small details in your life....
I had the opportunity to watch the moon rise tonight. It was amazing. As it was rising I was thinking to myself that there is an immense universe that we live in that we really don't know much about. I looked at the moon through my telephoto lens and found myself wishing I could walk on it. What unknown planets and people are out there that we don't know about? How many? Who lives on them? Where are they? One day I look forward to finding out just how immense this universe is, but in the meantime, I will be here on Earth marveling at Heavenly Father's creations.
The idea behind this blog came about from President Eyring's talk in General Conference. He asked that we take the time each day to write down the ways we had recognized God's hand in our lives. In doing so, we will be more grateful and even more blessed.
This is my effort to do so....
Because my family is one of my greatest blessings, there will be a lot of pictures of them. Please forgive my indulgence and Enjoy.