Wednesday, September 28, 2016

The RM.

Remember in the movie The RM when Elder Phelps arrives home from Wyoming to a non-triumphant entrance---
because no one was there? 
Of course you do because, well, Kirby Heyborne...

Sadly, the much anticipated Elder Paynter relived that scene for about 5 minutes last night
 after returning home from the Mexico, Pachuca mission.
Who knew that we were all at the wrong terminal with our signs and balloons?

But that mistake was quickly remedied and we jogged over to the correct terminal to find his bright smiling face waiting patiently to be found.

And found he was....

 I'm pretty sure that smile did not leave  his face all night.

And then, when all was said and done, what did he want to go eat after 2 years in Mexico?
Mexican food of course.  :)

Ha! Welcome Home Elder Paynter.

Monday, September 26, 2016

And Sometimes the Sabbath Feels Like This.

Wonderful day today.
How could it not have been after last night's General Women's Meeting, which quite possibly might have been the best I have ever heard and felt.
I know this is not surprising but I cried from beginning to end.
I have self-proclaimed this time in life, my "season of weeping" and truly, I hope it ends soon-- but seriously, every talk was a keeper.
President Uchtdorf's talk on Faith was profound. Just profound.
And would you ever tire of hearing the soul-wrenching words sung: "I'll never, no never, no never forsake?" Not me.

So anywho, the stage was set for an amazing Sabbath and  it did not disappoint.
This morning while getting ready for church I listened to Elder Holland's talk Safety for the Soul
three times in a row. It just filled me with the electricity of the spirit. Joseph Smith, the Book of Mormon, and Elder Holland...I just couldn't get enough.

And then I delved into a little 2 Nephi 33-which has always made me cry- even before my season of weeping. :) I LOVE Nephi. And I hate saying goodbye to him. But he says goodbye sooo well.

And of course-- the Primary Sacrament Meeting Program--I truly have the best calling in the church. Really. Leading the music today- was such a privilege- I'm not sure how I kept from weeping as I just watched them sing their hearts out. And when I say their hearts I mean just that. Their hearts were in every song. It was just the best.

In Primary, a sweet young girl gave the most beautiful talk on missionary work. She had prepared it so carefully and shared from her family of missionaries, present and returned, how they prepared for their missions. It was awesome.

AND THEN- our sweet neighbors returned from their 18 month mission in Virginia and we got to celebrate them with neighbors and friends. So great!

And finally, we celebrated birthdays with the cousins in Salt Lake. Such a strong family bond was felt a little different today and I'm not sure why but I will take it! Love those people!

And so, the Sabbath has buoyed me up in a big way to face the week. I expect a few challenges ahead of the great General Conference weekend. That's just how it goes. Bring it on.
Okay- not really but I'm ready if it's necessary. 

Shabbat Shalom.

Thursday, September 8, 2016


At any given period of time in my life 
I have a soundtrack that plays along.
My playlists are extensive and represent who I am or what I am feeling that day. Or that week. Or that month.
My kids can attest to the fact that the same playlist can play nonstop for a week.
For me, these playlists are essential. 
Sometimes, they help me breathe. 
Other times they are plain old happiness.
Most of the time, they just help me get through the day.
Right now, I have three playlists that are on constant rotation:

1) Korean drama soundtracks. 
I LOVE them. 
Love, love, love them.
My kids HATE them. That makes me love them more (wink, wink).  The right Korean ballad can make you feel like you've had a good cry without shedding a tear (and I am in the business of slowing down the shedding of tears right now). 
I feel them-- over and over and over-- even though I have no idea what they are saying. Yep. Probably too much info shared right there :)

2) Contemporary Christian Music
I'm not talking Mormon stuff--though I am not one to poke my nose in the air over Soft Sunday Sounds. 
Because truthfully, those songs were the soundtrack to my college years. Seriously don't get me started
But there is some GOOD contemporary Christian music out right now. I highly recommend this one by Hillary Scott and the Scott Family. The first time I heard it, I had to pull over to the side of the road and cry. Ugh. But it's become my mantra. :)  
And this one by Jonny Diaz...oh dear, I cry too (see why I need songs that I can't understand the words? Less crying...). 
And there are so many more on my playlist--
Sometimes I just need this as background music to my life.

3) Hawaiian Music. My "go-to" music lately. It takes my mind and heart back to a simpler time--a time when my kids were babies, and life was beautifully full of hopes and dreams. A time where the beach was our playground and our drive to the grocery store was stunningly gorgeous.  Such a great place to begin a family...
I love my Hawaiian playlist. 
My newest discovery is this song...and I DON'T cry when I listen to it-even though it's definitely tear-worthy...

And there you have it---
my happy place comes right from my phone.
Technology can be grand.

...and just because, here are some sweet Hawaii memories that are so much better if you play the above mentioned song as you look at them...or maybe it's just my heart that pings that way.

 Michaela, Zachary, and Bethany.

 Mom and Michaela at the Honolulu Zoo.

 Michaela and her first love, Punahele.

 Michaela and Meghan. Cousins reunited :)

 One of our many beach adventures....

 We eeked out one more child (Elijah)  before heading back to the mainland.

 Michaela almost never left the water. 
If it wasn't for the call of sandcastles, she would have stayed submerged for hours.

 Classic Hawaiian pose..

 Christmas downtown Honolulu :)

 Michaela begins the Labit family children...

 Grandma Tomi and Grandpa Fred on their wedding day.
Their reception was the biggest Luau I had ever been to.
Fred was well-known and well-loved.

And that's all for now.
Here's to many, many more soundtracks.

P.S. I am working on a playlist of Christmas music that doesn't sound like Christmas music. :)
I'll keep you posted on that one.