Recognizing my Creativity

The bounds of creativity extend far beyond the limits of a canvas or a sheet of paper and do not require a brush, a pen, or the keys of a piano. Creation means bringing into existence something that did not exist before—colorful gardens, harmonious homes, family memories, flowing laughter.” – President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, October 2008 Relief Society Broadcast

I still remember when President Uchtdorf gave this talk, “Happiness, Your Heritage”.  It hit me that creativity is something that can be accomplished daily – daily!!  Many times it is already happening and I just need the eyes to see it.  Thus I begin my new habit for the next 21 days. I will recognize the creativity in my life.  I will create and journal it here.  Thanks to Rhonna Farrer for the inspiration.  Her challenge (many rounds ago) in 2006 is how this blog began.  Now for the 21st round (how could I not participate in the 21st round of the 21-Day Challenge??) I  will journal my creativity habit.  Starting today and ending on Thanksgiving Day.  Perfect.

Today we created happy sharing memories with friends.  Every Friday here is Friend’s Day.  From 2:30 to 6:00 p.m. we open our home, backyard, and mostly the treehouse 😉 to any friends that want to play.  I love it.  It is a time to celebrate friendship and learn how to get along with those we love.  Here we cherish friendships and friend’s day.

It also means the other days during that time are family days.  I love that time too.  Time to create memories and learn together with the people we will be spending eternities with.  That’s very important too.

Today after I scooped ice cream cones (because these special days mean special treats) I remembered visiting my Great-Grandma Alder.  She always had ice cream and cones on hand.  Shortly after we arrived at her place for a visit she would say “Sheldon, get the cones”.  And Great-Grandpa would every time.  I remember that about our visits the most.  That and the amazing marble maze upstairs and the shuffleboard downstairs.  🙂

I will be putting photos into these posts as I find time.  Photography is one of my favorite creative expressions.

Courage and bravery for all…

okay, so there is so going to be a layout right here.  That’s right.  It’s just still in the works.


Oh my, tonight I got so busy working on a fun scrapbooking layout that I lost track of time.  It is now tomorrow and I forgot to post on my blog.  However, I am still awake so I will make a quick post.  I guess I will use my final quote from yesterday as well, and try a little harder tomorrow.  😉  Courage.

The layout I am working on is this week’s entry for the Ultimate Digi-Scrapper Contest.  That’s right I entered a contest.  It began May 1 and will end June 4.  Each week a number of people are eliminated until there is one winner.  The challenges thus far have been neat and the prizes are unbelievable.  We are in the Second Round (wahoo – I made it).  There were 388 (at the last count I saw) that entered, and 200 made it to the next round.  The first challenge was to “Put your best photo forward” and scrap one of your favorites.  My layout is here.  After the contest I will post the picture for the actual layout.

For this week we are to scrap about ourselves – “Through Your Eyes”.  An “all about me” page, which I have not done before.  So it has been a challenge and also fun.  It’s good to get some of this stuff down for the future generations to see and know.  Jim Bob was a sweetheart and did a photo shoot of me yesterday.  We got some fun pictures and I am using four of them on my layout.  I *think* it is finished and will post it tomorrow.  Link coming soon.  😉

Night all!

The word of the week …

“The important thing is this: To be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become.” – Henry Dubois

“It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power.” – Alan Cohen

“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” – Anais Nin

“Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.” – Winston Churchill

“Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm.” – Winston Churchill

“Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” – Christopher Robin to Pooh


“If my mind can conceive it, and my heart believe it, I know I can achieve it.” – Jesse Jackson

So you’ve probably guessed that the word is… courage. Another neat one to ponder. I shall leave with this quote that spoke to me. A good one to remember it at the end of a hard day.:

“Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I’ll try again tomorrow.” – Mary Anne Radmacher



Inked overlay (recolored) and flowers by Rhonna Farrer; font: Porcelain


Strength is one of those words with lots of layers and meanings. You can have strength, and you can be given strength. Strength comes from within, and you can gather strength from others.

I like how Rhonna worded it on her blog – it does take strength to become stronger. Thank you Rhonna for the quote in this entry. My favorite part is:

“We are all meant to shine, as children do. … And as we let our own light shine, we subconsciously give other people permission to do the same.” – Marianne Williamson

I know that we are all meant to shine. There have been many people I have met that just shine. It’s true, you do feel brighter yourself around them. Thank you also for the chance to ponder on the word, and for the “permission” to dig up quotes. I found quite a few. 🙂

One of my favorites that I can personally attest to is:

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” – Lao Tzu

This quote is a good one to remember during personal trials:

“If God sends us on strong paths, we are provided strong shoes.” – Corrie TenBoom

There are a few classic quotes I think of when I think of strength:

“What does not kill me makes me stronger.” – Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

“What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Our strength grows out of our weaknesses.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

This one made me laugh:

“Strength is the ability to break a chocolate bar into four pieces with your bare hands – and then eat just one of those pieces.” – Judith Viorst

This quote made me think:

“There are two ways of exerting one’s strength: one is pushing down, the other is pulling up.” – Booker T. Washington

This one doesn’t really have a lot to do with strength, but was right next to one that did. Anyway, I totally fell in love with this one. Inspirational!:

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain

And the final one I selected is so poetically beautiful.:

“And the day came when the risk it took to remain tight inside the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” – Anais Nin

Note to self: Have the strength to blossom!

Becoming My Best Self

I was looking around for quotes and ideas that fit with the habit theme. What I found is an inspiring message from President Thomas S. Monson (First Counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints) entitled “Becoming Our Best Selves”. The title alone is intriguing. How do I become the best me there is?

President Monson points out, “In His earthly ministry, the Master outlined how we should live, how we should teach, how we should serve, and what we should do so that we could become our best selves.” So the answer to my question is to become more like Jesus Christ. President Monson continues, “As we strive to learn His truths and then to live them, our lives and the lives of others will be abundantly blessed.” Sounds oh-so-good to me. I want a blessed live and to be a blessing to others.

He mentioned that several questions will guide our thinking as we try to find our best self. The one that jumped out to me was “Do I have the courage to change for the better?” It does take courage!

The scrapbooker in me loved this section, “It is time to choose an oft-forgotten path, the path we might call ‘the family way,’ so that our children and grandchildren might indeed grow to their full potential. There is an international tide running. It carries the unspoken message, ‘Return to your roots, to your families, to lessons learned, to lives lived, to examples shown, even family values.’ Often it is just a matter of coming home—coming home to attics not recently examined, to diaries seldom read, to photo albums almost forgotten.” How poetic and yummy is that? It motivates me to teach my family – the values and lessons that are important. And then to document them for future generations as well.

Another poetic quote: “It is in the home that we form our attitudes, our deeply held beliefs. It is in the home that hope is fostered or destroyed. Our homes are to be more than sanctuaries; they should also be places where God’s Spirit can dwell, where the storm stops at the door, where love reigns and peace dwells.” I want our children to always want to come home. To feel that love – of their parents and of God – in this home. I want the storm to stop and our home to be that place of peace. I am going to work harder on this one.

I will end with another quote by Thomas S. Monsen: “There are lessons to be taught; there are kind deeds to be done; there are souls to be saved.”



All papers, brushes and elements by Rhonna Farrer, except for music wings by Helen Parkinson. Fonts: Holiday Serif, Kiss Me and MA Sexy

I was blessed with parents that encouraged my creativity. I want my children to also feel safe expressing and using their imagination. That is one of the gifts that I can give them – my encouragement, attention and love. I want my blog to, among many other things, show my whimsical side.

Oodles of Quotes

A habit is an interesting thing to contemplate. Of course there are good and not-so-good ones. There are ones I have been trying to create for a while. Washing all the dishes every day (still looking forward to the day when that is a chore the kiddos can do – 🙂 ), keeping up on the laundry before there are massive piles, and keeping the living room in somewhat of an orderly condition. The living room is one of the most challenging – with three mobile children and one that loves to be held and cuddled. Jacob and Joshua are both getting much better at picking up one toy before moving on to a next, so that’s a blessing. Anyway – there are other habits too, like reading my scriptures daily and reading to my kiddos too.

Today I was thinking that perhaps it wouldn’t hurt to develop little happy habits as well. Having a little me time every day is good. A long time ago I wrote a little list of the things that make me happy – everything from homemade lemon soap to thunderstorms to fresh fruit to building sand castles to well-written songs. I need to dig out that list again and have some happy moments. Here’s to creating all kinds of good healthy habits!

I have found some be-au-tiful quotes. I’m going to list them here and use them for inspiration. Some are about habits and some are ones I stumbled on looking for habit quotes.

“The man who has no imagination has no wings.” – Muhammed Ali

“If you don’t like the news, go and make your own.” – Anonymous

“The job of the artist is always to deepen the mystery.” – Francis Bacon

“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.” – Annie Dillard

“Habits are first cobwebs, then cables.” – Spanish Proverb

“History will be kind to me for I intend to write it.” – Winston Churchill

Since I’m helping with story hour at the library tomorrow – this one jumped out at me:

“Library. Here is where people, one frequently finds, lower their voices and raise their minds.” – Richard Armour

I think that goes for little people too. 🙂

And here’s a quote that sums up what I am trying to do with this 21 Day Challenge:

“Learn as much by writing as by reading.” – Lord Acton

I have no idea who Lord Acton is, but he sounds pretty wise. 😉 Good luck to everyone with their personal quests on this challenge.

Me – a- bloggin'

I have grand visions of how my blog should look. I want it to be fun and inspiring, at least to me. 🙂 But if I put off posting until it is beautiful, it might not happen anytime soon. The main reason I want to blog is to journal about my family and me. Photos are good – they help tell the story of us. And I love photos! So I begin…

My blog name comes from an event I witnessed years ago. I was a college student on the verge of finals and just knew my life was challenging. I went to visit a basement music store to take my mind off things. As I walked up the stairs coming out of the store, I saw that it had been raining and muddy puddles were everywhere. A young pig-tailed girl in front of me became the victim of one of those puddles. I started walking quickly, so that I could help her up and maybe dry a tear or two. Instead, I saw her hop up, giggle and then begin to splash joyfully. The view of my current life changed. I might have challenges and difficult things to face, but by golly, I could still find joy. Joy in the trials even. My “Pollyanna” moment has been a tremendous blessing for me. I proudly proclaim that I am a “Puddle Jumper”. It doesn’t hurt that I have always had a child-like view and personality. 🙂

One thing that encouraged me to post is the challenge going on at Rhonna’s blog. The challenge is all about making or breaking a habit in 21 days. I have wanted to start a blog for so long. I certainly read enough of them. I need to take the time to tell my story as well. So, even if it is a short entry, I will blog for the next 21 days. It might be a little more sporadic after that. But I will be consistant for the next three weeks – :). Each week there will be a new word for us to ponder and find quotes about, perhaps create an art journal page or scrapbook layout with. The word for this first week is Habit. I found two wonderful quotes so far:

“Habit is habit, and not to be flung out of the window by any man, but coaxed downstairs a step at a time.” – Mark Twain

That one made me laugh. The next quote makes me want to focus on creating good habits.

“Our character is basically a composite of our habits. Because they are consistent, often unconcious patterns, they constantly, daily, express our character…” – Steven R. Covey

I will leave with a photo that I hope becomes a habit very, very soon – Backyard Picnics. 🙂 lol.

Backyard Picnic

Brush Stroke on photo by Michelle Coleman. Fonts: SA Cinta and Artistamp Medium

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