Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tender Mercies

One of my favorite quotes EVER comes for Elder David A. Bednar, one of the twelve apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He said "The tender mercies of the Lord are real. They do not occur randomly or by coincidence." I see those tender mercies in my life everyday. But, today was a big one, and I want to share how grateful I am to know that my Heavenly Father is looking out for me the way He is.

This morning I went in to the school I will be attending come January. I am planning to go to nursing school so that I can provide a better life for my kids. Anyway, as I had figured it I still needed about 3 quarters worth of prerequisites before I could apply to the nursing program itself. I met with an advisor, and got signed up for the classes I (thought) I needed. Then, as the advisor suggested, I went over to chat with the director of nursing admissions. It turned out that my high school classes count and I don't need anything at all to be able to apply. That means I will shave almost a year off my schooling and might be able to start nursing school as early as this coming fall. I am still going to start back to school in January and just take some of the extras that I can take during the program or before. It really made my day and I'm so grateful for the ways that Heavenly Father blesses me in my life.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Buckeye State

It's hard to believe that a week has already flown by in Ohio. We are getting settled in and I only have a few more boxes to unpack, thank goodness!!! The trip to get here was long, three days of driving, but so worth it in the end. There were some wonderful people from church who came to help us unload the trailer and then the real fun began. I actually really enjoy unpacking as I can organize stuff in to new places. Once I get organized completely I will post some pictures of everything. =)

It has been a BUSY week. We got here on a Tuesday and Hailey just had to start at her new school the next day. She loves it and I love her teacher. She's really sweet. They were actually having parent teacher conferences the day Hailey started, so I went in to talk to Mrs. Gaddis a bit about who Hailey is and such. The first thing she said to me was, if today was any indication, I'm just going to love your daughter! She said Hailey was so willing to help and polite that it was refreshing to see a kid so well behaved even in the midst of such a life change. Maybe that means I'm doing something right. She also said that Hailey is going in to the higher reading group that they have as she is ahead of most of her class with words she knows and things like that, so that made for a proud mommy too.

In other news, I went up to Southern State and got everything done so I can register for classes next week. Come January I will be taking ChemI, Biology and English Composition. It will be hectic, but I'm excited! If everything transfers that I am hoping, I only have 4 classes that HAVE to be finished before I can apply to nursing school. That would put me a quarter ahead of where I thought I was and that is always good news. We'll see how it goes.

I also got to go over to Wilmington for church last Sunday and it was fantastic to see so many old friends. I feel so blessed to be a part of the gospel, that it is the same no matter if I go to church in Texas, California, Utah, Ohio or Germany for that matter. The Savior is STILL the Savior and always will be. I'm so thankful to know that, to the very core of my being.

In final news, we had our first snow....the girls were absolutely mesmerized. They stood at the big bay windows in the family room and just watched the HUGE flakes fall from the sky. I hope all of you are well and feeling as blessed as I do.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Discipline and Strength

Today on the drive here, my girls were watching the movie Mulan. I love this movie for the music as well as the lessons that can be learned. For those who have seen it, this will be familiar. But for those who have not, it is about a young woman who joins the Chinese army to keep her father from having to go, and to bring honor to her family. There is so much to be learned from this movie. First, love of family over self. I think I've got that one down pretty well. I would do anything for my family, especially my girls! Sacrificing for them doesn't seem as much of a sacrifice when I get to see them happy.

Secondly, devotion to something higher than oneself. In China the best way for a woman to bring her family honor was to get married and have a son, but Mulan didn't do so hot at the matchmaker. I didn't have a matchmaker other than myself, but apparently I didn't do so hot at it either. However, I am absolutely determined to bring my family honor, most importantly my Father in Heaven. I want NOTHING more than to return to Him someday and hear him say, "Well done thou good and faithful servant". So that is the ultimate goal (there are many others along the way), now how do I reach it?

That answer is also found in the movie. At one point the Captain shoots an arrow to the top of a pole and tells the soldiers to find a way to retrieve it, but not before putting weights around their wrists that symbolize discipline and strength. He tells them they will need BOTH to retrieve the arrow. They all try, and they all fail...over and over and over again!

The same is true for us, we fall short of our goals each and every day. But, there is HOPE. The Savior made up the difference for us. We CAN succeed if we have the discipline to go after our goals and the strength to stick with it through the tough stuff. There have been times in my life when I have been sorely lacking in discipline, and I know that. But, I recently proved to myself that I DO have the self discipline to do something I really want. Now I just need to keep applying that knowledge in my every day life. The strength is another story. I rarely feel up to the tasks that lie ahead of me, especially as a single mother of three. I am responsible for these three precious spirits and I refuse to fail in that stewardship. I have heard it said that you usually don't know how strong you are until being strong is your only option. Well, now it's my only option. Except that I KNOW that I don't have to come up with that strength all alone. My Savior provides it for me each and every day. He has carried me through many a tough day in my life, and I have faith that He will continue to do so. Of that I am sure, and feel eternally blessed.