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May 23, 2012
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Happy Graduation!

We hope all you Joy Schoolers have had a wonderful joyful year! We know many of you are about to have or have just had graduations! Congratulations! Here’s our granddaughter Elsie’s graduation in Hawaii. Aloooooha!

May 14, 2012
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The Power of Moms “big hit” and Retreat

We are sometimes mystified by the power of the Internet.  Sometimes it seems no one is out there and then suddenly we learn what it means when someone says, "it went viral"!  As those of you who follow Deseret News Blogs know that our oldest daughter Saren and her dynamite mother friends power up the Motherhood Matters blog.  This sprang out of an organization that can be found at powerofmoms.com. It is a web site for deliberate mothers! Saren and her co-founder April Perry have created this website that enriches, comforts and inspires moms to be better, do better and get over it when they don’t!

After Saren and April have worked tirelessly for about five years to make this website fly, suddenly one of April’s articles "went viral".  It apparently touched a nerve amongst mothers because it generated ONE MILLION HITS!  If you want to take a look, click here. What a great gift to these amazing women for Mother’s Day!

As of last weekend, Saren and April have completed 17 weekend retreats which is job training for mothers all over the United States. Last month they did two retreats in Australia!  Their readership covers the globe and they are thrilled to be part of this movement to train mothers not only for their hardest and best job, but also for their lifelong most-important career.

Last weekend Richard and I hosted a Power of Moms Mother’s Day Retreat at our home. I must say that the power of deliberate mothers was bursting at the seams of our home in Park City.  On Friday we talked about specific ways moms can take care of themselves as well as some family systems that helps a home run more smoothly. On Saturday April gave instructions for keeping your mind (and stuff) organized with a system she has created called Mind Organization for Moms.

We are sometimes mystified by the power of the Internet.  Sometimes it seems no one is out there and then suddenly we learn what it means when someone says, "it went viral"!  As those of you who follow Deseret News Blogs know that our oldest daughter Saren and her dynamite mother friends power up the Motherhood Matters blog.  This sprang out of an organization that can be found at powerofmoms.com. It is a web site for deliberate mothers! Saren and her co-founder April Perry have created this website that enriches, comforts and inspires moms to be better, do better and get over it when they don’t!

After Saren and April have worked tirelessly for about five years to make this website fly, suddenly one of April’s articles "went viral".  It apparently touched a nerve amongst mothers because it generated ONE MILLION HITS!  If you want to take a look, click here. What a great gift to these amazing women for Mother’s Day!

As of last weekend, Saren and April have completed 17 weekend retreats which is job training for mothers all over the United States. Last month they did two retreats in Australia!  Their readership covers the globe and they are thrilled to be part of this movement to train mothers not only for their hardest and best job, but also for their lifelong most-important career.

Last weekend Richard and I hosted a Power of Moms Mother’s Day Retreat at our home. I must say that the power of deliberate mothers was bursting at the seams of our home in Park City.  On Friday we talked about specific ways moms can take care of themselves as well as some family systems that helps a home run more smoothly. On Saturday April gave instructions for keeping your mind (and stuff) organized with a system she has created called Mind Organization for Moms.

One of the best things about these retreats is being able to break up into small groups so that moms can help each other with specific problems and needs at home. Every mother brought her own gifts and powers. Comments, questions and suggestions from those present always makes us realize that they could do their own retreat….many of whom are! It was a gorgeous day so some of the groups were able to meet outside.

We were all moved by Macy Robison who is a extraordinary talent with a gorgeous voice and a special talent for touching and lifting up mother’s hearts. She has produced her own delightful CD called Children Will Listen which you can access here.

The Big Daddy really enjoyed himself too! He, of course added so much to the retreat as a thorn among the roses!

Snacks and a lovely lunch were served to keep our brain power at maximum power!

All retreat management was capably handled by the Tiffany Sowby who is truly incredible in her organizational abilities!

After a long and thought provoking day of mother training, about a dozen brilliant women who serve on the Power of Moms board stayed on and were able to put their heads together during an evening dinner/meeting where they brainstormed about how to help the website run better and reach more mothers. April is a computer guru and managed to get several board members across the country and even Japan hooked in via Google+ and a conference call.

Since there is basically no instruction manual for mothers to enable them to be the best they can be, The Power of Moms is looking to create something that will power up those who are working in the most important job in the world. They’d love have a million members!  To be one of those excellent moms go to powerofmoms.com.

May 8, 2012
Uncategorized

Dare to Dream

When people ask me if I meant to have nine children, I always shake my head with a look of dismay and say, “No, actually I meant to have 10 and I just couldn’t get that 10th one to “materialize”! In hindsight, I have realized that nine is fine! 

I came from a small family of three children, all of whom were hard to come by. My marvelous mom was 38 when she married my handsome farmer Dad who had lost his wife to cancer and was 13 years her senior. After two years with no sign of children, they adopted a darling little five-year-old from an orphanage and then….bang! Within months my mom was pregnant and gave birth to me when she was 41 and one year later my sister came by the same route when she was 42. Dad was 55. Their dream had come true!

I’m not sure exactly when my dream of a big family formulated but I knew by the time my dating relationship with Richard was getting serious that if he wanted to marry me, a big family would be on order (whether or not the order would be filled was yet to be determined).  He actually agreed and we started dreaming about fun parenting ideas long before our wedding day.

Dreams are what propels us into the future with faith and hope. Even if dreams may not turn out exactly as we had envisioned, they help us accomplish things that we could never have done without them. And we learn so much in the process!

Forty two years have passed since our wedding day and even though the number of children seemed important at the time and I knew it would be a daring adventure, I had absolutely no idea what that number meant!  Now as I look back, I realize that dream was the guiding light that has led me to more joy, more heartache, more fun, more hand-wringing, more excitement, more inspiration, more self-discovery and more treasure than I could have ever have imagined, even in my wildest dreams! 

Below is my dream come true and in living color:

Our brilliant friend Whitney Johnson has just launched a new book titled Dare, Dream, Do: Remarkable Things Happen When You Dare to Dream, which is available at bookstores nationwide and at all major online retailers, including Amazon, B&N, Indiebound and others.

Whitney, a stellar dreamer in her own right, has gathered inspiring stories of those who have dared to dream and have accomplished their goals in fascinating ways with stimulating ideas. We are thrilled that she was kind enough to include contributions of the “dreams” of three of our daughters, Saren, Shawni and Saydi as well as our semi-adopted Bulgarian daughter Eva Koleva Timothy. 

We are excited to send several of her books to our friends and family for Mother’s Day. To have a book or books sent to your door, or to the mothers in your life. click here.

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