Daron, Melanie, Stephen, Kassie, and Kenny

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Surviving and Serving with Hurricane Harvey!

This has been an incredible experience, watching Hurricane Harvey huff and puff and blow so many houses in! "For He raised the stormy wind, which lifted up the waves of the sea... Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and He delivered them from their distress. He made the storm be still, and the waves of the sea were hushed" (Psalm 107). LOVE seeing all these yellow Helping Hands shirts! People working into the night! Families begging to feed the missionaries!

    GOD BLESS TEXAS! I'm so very thankful that not even Hurricane Harvey can dampen the spirits or slow down the service of Texans! I'm humbled to look around me and see friends that open up their homes, their restaurants (Go Kas & Chill!), bake food, entertain their neighbor's children, rescue families, and bring soda over to my mom who's camping out with us! My eyes teared up when I saw my son standing out in the rain under my dad's old umbrella... He's still here watching out for us. 

Mom prepared for the storm with Sees; kids made activity packs to donate; delivering donuts and meals; 

Our sweet Stake President asked the 5 of us to sing "How Great Thou Art" at the early morning 1 hr sac meeting for the crew workers. I loved the song we sang - As Now we Take the Sacrament. This line struck me: "With hands now pledged to do thy work...We take the sacrament." I've never attended church in jeans, work gloves/boots, and a Yellow Helping Hands Shirt - it was such a memorable, wonderful experience! And Sterl and Maxwell got to meet Pres. Uchtdorf!




Beautiful LDS Deseret News article about the storm & recovery efforts: https://www.deseretnews.com/article/865687657/Harvey-in-Houston-LDS-temple-threatened-meetinghouses-damaged-missionaries-safe.html 
My journal entry about mucking in the temple ~
I had the privilege to help clean the Houston temple after the flooding. It was heartbreaking. When we got there, most of us stood there and looked at it all and just cried. They told us to please not post or take pics of it, but it was incredibly, just as beautiful as ever from the outside, except for all the flowers and bushes matted down from flood waters, I was lucky to have been put on this crew. My friend Julie Hepworth's cousin works for the church, so when they needed someone local to get some volunteers to work with their official Servpro paid workers that drove their big trucks down from Utah, she called Julie to round up some friends. It was so precious how careful they were about having us remove the waste, all of it bagged so as to not defile the front of the temple as we were moving the trash out and driving it in trucks around to the back where the huge dumpsters waited.

Fun finding ways to give service power washing, FHE feeding ducks, Stephen asks Samantha to Homecoming with a clever puzzle, and great playing with Sterl home from his mission!

Love my kids keeping busy with things... this text cracked me up, talking about all their fun activities


And Mom did Family History with Jill Bluth for the first time!!

Jill to Mom: "I'm gonna be honest with ya, this 1st screen is a bunch of nonsense, like Facebook, you don't even need to look at that! You were born in Sweden... You're a Pioneer baby, you just didn't have to come over in a wagon! Here's your 5th great grand uncle. As soon as you seal him, he can go be free and progress. Now I know your family and y'all aren't just "sit on the couch" people. You can heal that for them, it's the miracle you can do for them. As you connect them here, Stephen will be there on the other side escorting those couples. How awesome that you and your husband can be holding hands thru the veil." 

"Now when the Savior comes, you'll be in the BOOK presented to Jesus that has recorded all that has been done to bring about His work and glory. You taking casseroles and inviting people to church, that's all gonna be in that book! As you start to do FH work, you'll realize that when you are thinking about your ancestors, they are THERE and are tending to you and your children and grandchildren. Those kids need to know that these people who have passed are WITH them and protecting them. You're building a spiritual fortress around them. By you being the matriarch of this clan Inger, you have unleashed the powers of heaven. Carry on! I know that when you leave here, your cute husband is going to keep it all going. What we're doing today is standing on his shoulders and building on what Stephen already did. You come to appreciate that you have a body... It doesn't matter that we have freckles or extra weight, there's so much we can do because we're here for those that aren't! Stephen is the missionary there who will teach the people you find. Your did NOT want him leaving to go to the other side, but you'll come to a point where you'll SAY, how do people do it WITHOUT someone on the other side?? The more you get Heavenly help, the less you gotta do!!" 

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Back to school, Sterl returns, & Stieg!

August brought more summer fun, date nights, and back to school flurry -- FIRSTS: First time to have 2 teens in high school, first time for my youngest to start middle school; first time for Kas to begin her 4-year early morning seminary journey (she loved it!) and first time to send kids back to school without Grandpa giving them a good luck kiss. Cherishing every moment with these 3 friends that we feel so blessed to have grow up in our home..."time flies on wings of lightning... we cannot get it back!"

Kassie's first official job and paycheck from Karen's Closet, a ladies boutique where we shop; the owner said to her one day, "you are the cutest thing ever, come work for me!" She's only 15 so she just did a couple of days and loved it, maybe will go back next summer!

Summer date nights ~


Stieg joins our family! Sent straight from Dad -- he won't leave her side!!  

Temple trips, swim parties, and fun to live by cousins -

Kas gives her first Sacrament Mtg talk and Steff comes as a chicken to teach my primary music!




And Sterling triumphantly returns ~ Well done, thou good and faithful servant!!

Savannah departs for SUU!!


Kenny conducts his first Scout Court of Honor as Master of Ceremonies! 



Stephen rocks his keynote speech presenting to a fellow Eagle Scout!


And the first day of school & seminary, finding Kenny's classes, signing Stephen up for choir, so fun!

Watching the Eclipse! 

Always remembering Dad...

Cute 1999 journal entry from Kas!