Monday, June 9, 2014


Well, the school year is over.  And seminary is over until fall.  (We are still "doing school" during the summer, but a simpler form of it.)  Brother Turley was a wonderful teacher and the girls really loved his lessons.  Here is Key Lime Pie and Kotten Kandy's seminary class on the last day...
The following day, I took five of my music students (including Key Lime Pie and Kotten Kandy) to a "real" recording studio.  Each kid got to record 3 pieces.  They really seemed to enjoy it.  And the recording studio was really kind.
Key Lime Pie sang "Hold On" from the musical The Secret Garden
Kotten Kandy sang "The Wind" - I LOVE that song!
Key Lime Pie played "Many Meetings" from The Lord of the Rings
Kotten Kandy sang "Elusive Butterfly"
Key Lime Pie - Kotten Kandy - Muffin 
They LOVED the recording studio!
Scott's Birthday was Sunday.  It was a beautiful day.  And I think Scott enjoyed his cake.  We had some good friends over and the girls and I gave him a new video recorder.  He was pretty excited.  He also got chocolate and a Thor DVD.
Some pics that were too cute:
Scott, Jelly Bean and Key Lime Pie
Apple Pie
Kotten Kandy and Jelly Bean
And Kotten Kandy spoke in sacrament meeting.  Once again, she did a fabulous job!  She thinks she might want to be a public speaker when she grows up.  She writes fabulous talks and delivers them well too!  Check it out:
            Happy Birthday, Dad!  Today is a special day, because I get to celebrate a man who has taught me a lot about being a true disciple of Christ.  My daddy is always reading books about the Savior and trying to understand His sacrifice and His life.  Dad shares with me thoughts and scriptures about Christ and teaches me what it means to continue learning about the Atonement and Christlike attributes.  I’m glad I have him as a dad!
L. Tom Perry said, “The word disciple comes from the Latin [meaning] a learner. A disciple of Christ is one who is learning to be like Christ—learning to think, to feel, and to act [like] he does. To be a true disciple, to fulfill that learning task, is the most demanding regimen known to man. No other discipline compares … in either requirements or rewards. It involves the total transformation of a person from the state of the natural man to that of [a] saint, one who loves the Lord and serves with all of his heart, might, mind, and strength.”  
So how do we become like Christ?  How do we become a true disciple? We learn about him.  We study his life by reading great books (like my father has shown me.)  We ponder and we pray to develop the relationship we should have with our Savior and our Heavenly Father.  In essence, we try to be like him.  
I have been studying Preach My Gospel.  My favorite chapter is chapter 6.  It talks about developing nine Christlike attributes.  To become a true disciple we need to develop and study these attributes.
The first attribute we should apply is Faith.  Alma 32:21 “faith is not to have a perfect knowledge of things; therefore if ye have faith ye hope for things which are not seen, which are true.”
Wally, a character in a novel called Children of the Promise, is a great example of this attribute of faith.  This book takes place during World War II, and follows the life of a fictional LDS family. It shows their trials during the war and what they each have to face. This family, the Thomas family, has a son named Wally who leaves his home to join the Air Force. Just as the War begins, he ends up at a base in the Philippians.  He is taken prisoner by the Japanese, and he survives the Bataan Death March.  For three years he endures different work details that nearly kill him.  He suffers with starvation, multiple sicknesses, and broken bones. In the long run he makes it home, but throughout the whole ordeal he remains strong.  He doesn’t give up.  He continues to pray, and to sing they Hymns he had been taught as a little boy in primary.   Despite everything he remains faithful, and that’s what we need to do.  Remain faithful until the end.
The next attribute in Preach My Gospel is Hope.  “Hope is trust in God’s promises, faith that if we act now, the desired blessings will be fulfilled in the future… The unfailing source of our hope is that we are sons and daughters of God and that His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, saved us from death”  
We studied the Book of Mormon in seminary this year.  Brother Turley taught us about Mormon and Moroni.  They are huge examples to me of that Hope.  They were in one of the worst circumstances ever.  Imagine knowing the truth but not being able to share it with anyone, because everyone was too wicked.  Mormon and Moroni had to have great hope in the plan of salvation in order to endure this trial.  They could not share the gospel with their peers, but they could share it with us through the Book of Mormon.  Their hope is evident in their writings.  I hope that I could have that much hope in the face of danger.
Charity is one of my favorite Christlike attributes.  Charity is the pure love of Christ.  In a world full of hate and sorrow, charity is desperately needed.
My family and I watched a movie called The Saratov Approach. The movie is a true story about two missionaries who get kidnapped and held for ransom in Russia.  While they are in captivity, the Elders begin to not only pray for their families back home, but also for their captors. Elder Probst and Elder Tuttle pray that they their captors can have a change of heart.  They go from wanting to hurt them, to leaving their lives in God’s hands.  They showed true charity when they remained in captivity instead of possibly taking the lives of their kidnappers.  Instead of hating the men who planned to kill them, they relied on charity.  When I have been wronged, I use their example of praying for charity.  I have prayed and I have felt that peace and I have felt that love.
The next Christlike attribute is Virtue.  “Virtue originates in your innermost thoughts and desires.  It is a pattern of thought and behavior based on high moral standards….  What you choose to think and do when you are alone and you believe no one is watching is a strong measure of your virtue.”
For the Strength of Youth is a great guide to being virtuous.  If we strive to live by the guidelines set forth in this inspired pamphlet, virtue will follow.  One of the guidelines in to dress modestly.  In the booklet it states:  “Your body is sacred.  Respect it and do not defile it in anyway.  Through your dress and appearance, you can show that you know how precious your body is.  You can show that you are a disciple of Jesus Christ and that you love Him.”  My mother truly internalized this principle.  She decided when she turned 12 that she would NEVER EVER wear anything that was not temple worthy.  She made sure that every article of clothing that she owned she could wear after she was endowed.  She never wanted to be embarrassed in front of Heavenly Father because of the way she dressed.  Her example and guidance has taught me what it means to be modest. 
I LOVE the next Christlike attribute: Knowledge.  Learning is something I REALLY enjoy.  In D&C 88:118 it states:  “Seek ye diligently and teach one another words of wisdom; yea, seek ye out of the best books words of wisdom; seek learning, even by study and also by faith.
My mom and dad say that I love knowledge almost as much as Grandpa Mac.  My grandpa spent his entire childhood reading everything he could get his hands on.  He read the entire Old and New Testament about 5 times before he was a teenager.  He still consistently learns.  Whenever he comes to visit, he brings books for us to read, takes us to the book store to get new books to learn from, and teaches us what he has learned.  He has taught me how to take care of bees.  He has taught me to play the ukulele.  He has shared his knowledge of gospel principles with me.  And he inspires me to learn more.  I am grateful for his example and his sharing of knowledge.
Patience is the 6th Christlike attribute mentioned in Preach My Gospel.  President Monson said, “Life is full of difficulties, some minor and others of a more serious nature.  There seems to be an unending supply of challenges for one and all.  Our problem is that we often expect instantaneous solutions to such challenges, forgetting that frequently the heavenly virtue of patience is required.”
Amy Bettenhausen is one of my school teachers.  She show constant patience with me and my sister as we learn grammar, writing and discuss concepts in the novels we read together.  She also shows tons of patience with her own children.  She is a great example to me of patience.
Humility is the willingness to submit to the will of the Lord and to give the Lord the honor for what is accomplished.  It is also the 7th attribute to becoming a disciple.
Many of you may be acquainted with Corrie ten Boom’s book entitled The Hiding Place.  It is the true story of two Dutch women who were imprisoned during World War II for harboring Jewish refugees.  Corrie and Betsie (her sister) lived by the precepts of Christ and found great comfort in reading the Bible.  (not the Book of Mormon, because they didn’t have it.)  Their prison cell was infested with fleas.  Remembering that the Bible says to thank God for all things, Betsie told Corrie that they should thank God for the fleas.  Corrie did not want to, but Betsie insisted.  Weeks later they found out that the fleas were indeed something to be thankful for.  It was because of the fleas that they were able to keep their Bible without the guards finding it.  They were humble enough to give God honor for the fleas even when they didn’t realize how much the fleas were a blessing to them.
Diligence reminds me of my 41 year old dad.  He is steady, consistent, earnest and energetic in doing the Lord’s work.  No matter what life throws at him, he continues to pray, read his scriptures and ponder upon the things of Christ.   Just like in D&C 58:27, my dad is anxiously engaged in good causes, and does many things of his own free will and choice to bring to pass righteousness.  When my dad was out of work for a year, he studied his scriptures daily and attended the temple weekly.  At an early age, I learned how diligence blessed his life and ours. 
The last Christlike attribute is obedience.  Christ is the ultimate of example of obedience.  He set the example to be baptized, even though he was perfect and had never sinned.  He was baptized to show obedience to His Father.  He Atoned and was crucified to obey the law.  Despite the difficulties of these tasks, he did it.  The least we can do is obey His commandments and strive to be like him in all we do.  This is discipleship in it’s fullest. 


  1. Katia - you are absolutely amazing - Beautiful talk!!! Kiara - You make me break the 10th commandment - I love your hair it is so beautiful!!! My nieces rock :)

  2. Hi S&S, K&K,
    Happy Birthday, Scott. We sang to you on our way home from ID. Hope you got to hear it! Look like you were able to celebrate in style and with loved ones. I'm glad, and we wish you many more.
    The recording studio experience must have been a blast. Do you girls realize how blessed you are to have a Mom like you have? She always goes above and beyond the call of duty!
    Katia, your talk is impeccable. Here's what I want to know. Did anyone else edit it for you? Because as it is, it doesn't even need editing! It's practically perfect in every way! I know, Mary Poppins must have helped you. :)
    Love you all, Mom/Mil