Savvy Chic

tidbits, thoughts, and ramblings. . .with a Mormon twist

Ways to Increase Laughter in Your Home August 24, 2007

Filed under: children,fun,kids,savvy thoughts — savvychic @ 7:06 pm

Inspired by the Ensign article, “The Power of Laughter,” Sept 2007, p32.

We need to laugh more!  Laughing has so many benefits–phyically, mentally, spiritually, in every way.  It has been said that while children laugh on average 400 times every day, adults only laugh about 15 times.  So, find your inner child.  Play.  Don’t be so serious.  And LAUGH!

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Here are some ideas to get you started:
 
*Pretend you’re the tickle monster and go on a tickle escapade–(be careful and do not over-push your parental boundaries though or the laughter will not be happy laughter!)

*With permission–tape record the tickling of a sibling (hehe) for a predetermined amount of time.  Beware: 5 minutes is a very long time!  Listen to the recording whenever you feel the need to be cheered! (hehehaha. . .The recording of my sister tickled by yours truly is a prized possession and will make anyone in my family laugh just thinking of about it!)

*Run out of toilet paper and humbly ask for help–always good for a snicker or two.

*Really play with your kids without worrying about anyone watching you.

*Stand in front of the mirror and make faces.

*In cahoots with someone else, face each other and have the following serious conversation:
Person A: This is a very solemn occasion.
Person B: Indeed it is.
A&B together: Ha. . .Ha. . .Ha
No one is allowed to smile, snicker, or even think a happy thought during this conversation.  Just try it!

*Have your little ones put on a magic show!  (My favorites are the disappearing tricks–“Now you see it! Just a minute while I leave the room. . . Now you don’t!)  Record it and show it again years later when it is plainly obvious to them how “magic” their tricks were.  It’s soooo cute!

*Have your child lay on the ground with their hands over their head.  Sing the following words to an upbeat tune of your own:

A tickle a day keeps the doctor away. 
A tickle a day keeps the doctor away. 
A tickle a day keeps the doctor away. 
A tickle, a tickle a day!

*Play chubby bunny: place a large marshmallow in your mouth and say “chubby bunny”.  Repeat until you can get nothing more than “Uuu-yy oo-yy”.  Of course, there is no swallowing or chewing of the marshmallows in between turns.  (Only play this with a child who is likely to be able to do this carefully–there is a choking hazard!)

*Play a Cranium game–one with play dough, charades, and wiggling.

*Play Twister.

*Read a funny children’s book.

*Listen to what your kids say–they say the funniest things! (I try to write these things down and then send them in a family newsletter.  It is the most popular part of the letter.)

*Make an indoor fort with the dining table, pillows, and blankets.  Act out the part of a princess in distress and let your kids rescue you from the broccoli eating dragon.

*Record your princess in distress and knight in shining armor act.  Watch it later.

*Create a maze on the sidewalk with sidewalk chalk.  Try to navigate it–hopping on one foot, or pretending to be a crab, or walking backwards and only able to look to one side. . .

*Draw pictures of each other.

*Make cartoons of the family.

*Read a joke book aloud.

*Have a water fight.

*Give your kids a camera and head outside for a funny photo shoot.  Bring props.

*Have a watermelon seed spitting contest

*Camp out in a kitchen table fort with popcorn, and a fun game.  Sing a few silly camp songs. Make s’mores in the microwave.  Tell funny stories.

*Look at a family photo album together

*Make a batch of popcorn and toss the kernel into the air one by one and try to catch the pieces in your mouth.  Or toss them into a partner’s mouth.

*Make cookies together, eat a few out of the oven and deliver some to friends–just cause.  (save a few to eat when you get home.)

*Blow bubbles.

*Pretend to trip–for some reason, that always gets the kids laughing.

*Play in the rain and splash in the puddles.

*Just laugh!  And enjoy being with each other!

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For more to read, see this article on LDS Image!

If you’re still need of a good laugh, this is an absolutely hilarious post that is guaranteed to make you laugh.  Warning:  it is really funny! 

 

Biographies of the Prophets: Spencer W. Kimball August 23, 2007

Filed under: biographies — savvychic @ 10:29 am

as posted on LDS Image

“We have a commitment to serve our Lord. We have an assurance that the cause is just and worthy. But, above all, we have a knowledge that God lives and is in His Heavens and that His Son Jesus Christ has laid out a plan for us which will bring us and our loved ones eternal life if we are faithful.”[i]

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“Lengthen your stride” and “Do it!” are the two themes President Spencer Woolley Kimball preached to the world and lived by in his own life.  Starting out as a child with serious health difficulties and well acquainted with loss, he became a notable, energetic, and determined president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Spencer Woolley Kimball was born to Andrew Kimball and Olive Woolley on March 28, 1895 in Salt Lake City, UT. At the request of the First Presidency, the young family moved to Thatcher, Arizona when Spencer was three years old.  His father served as the Stake President while also providing for the family by farming and working in business.[ii]

 “As a child, Spencer suffered from typhoid fever and facial paralysis and once nearly drowned. Four of his sisters died in childhood, and his mother died when he was eleven.”[iii]  These challenges and losses perhaps gave him the incredible compassion he would later exhibit in his life.

His health problems did not end in childhood though.  In 1948, Elder Kimball had a heart attack.  He suffered from throat cancer a few years later which resulted in the removal of most of his vocal cords.  He had open heart surgery at age seventy-seven and three brain surgeries due to a cerebral hemorrhage.[iv][v]

In his patriarchal blessing (at age eleven), he was promised to perform a great work among the Native Americans.  He could not have foreseen his part in the relief efforts for the Navajos during the winter of 1947, nor of his role in the Indian Student Placement Service.  President Kimball also stood strongly against racial prejudice and it was in his administration as President of the Church, through the inspiration of the Lord, that the priesthood was offered to all worthy males members.

President Kimball was also an advocate for women’s rights.  General meetings for women and young women were started, the Monument to Women was constructed, women were authorized to pray in church meetings, and women leaders began to speak in general conference.

Spencer Kimball graduated with highest honors from Gila Academy at age 19.   He then received a mission call to the Swiss-Austrian Mission, but due to World War I served in the Central States Mission.  [vi]

After returning home, he attended one semester at the University of Arizona.  “He then received an induction notice for army service in World War I. Although expecting to leave any day, he married Camilla Eyring, a school teacher, on November 16, 1917. They eventually had four children: Spencer L., Olive Beth, Andrew E., and Edward L.” [vii]

There were delays in the military unit he was to join and so he was deterred.  He began working at a bank.  That bank failed, but another bank hired Spencer as the chief teller.  With Joseph Greenhalgh in 1927, he started a new business—insurance and real estate.  Hard work and perseverance got the Kimball family through the Great Depression.  Kimball declared that “he would set up a peanut stand before he would become another person’s employee again.”[viii] The flexibility of setting his own hours allowed him to fulfill church callings and to participate in many community activities—“PTA, library, elections, city council, Red Cross, Boy Scouts, the local college, and the organization of a radio station. He was selected as statewide leader of the Arizona Rotary Club.”[ix]

While an apostle, he wrote Miracle of Forgiveness.  His book continues to counsel and comfort members of the Church.  Written with the intent to help people understand the path of repentance, the atonement, and of forgiveness, he drew upon his experience of counseling many people as a church leader.

While still very young, Spencer Kimball accepted a challenge to read the entire Bible.  At age 14, he was a Sunday School teacher.  He was ordained a seventy at nineteen, served as a stake clerk twice, as a counselor to the stake president, as stake president, and at age 48, was ordained an Apostle by President Grant.  He became the 12th President of the Church on December 30, 1973.  He was 78.  He died on November 5, 1985.

In the twelve years of his presidency, many wonderful things were accomplished.  Starting with the Washington DC temple, 21 temples were dedicated.  Missionary numbers increased dramatically as sisters and couples went forth to serve.  The ward meeting schedules were consolidated. The First Quorum of the Seventy was organized.  As mentioned earlier, every worthy male in the Church could now hold the priesthood.  “He led the Church with spiritual power and energetic determination during a period of dramatic vitality and growth. His administration produced significant advances in doctrinal understanding, member unity, and gospel expansion worldwide.”[x]

A year before he left this life for the next, he gave us his testimony and a promise.

“Knowing full well that before long, in the natural course of events, I must stand before the Lord and give an accounting of my words, I now add my personal and solemn testimony that God, the Eternal Father, and the risen Lord, Jesus Christ, appeared to the boy Joseph Smith. I testify that the Book of Mormon is a translation of an ancient record of nations who once lived in this western hemisphere, where they prospered and became mighty when they kept the commandments of God, but who were largely destroyed through terrible civil wars when they forgot God. This book bears testimony of the living reality of the Lord Jesus Christ as the Savior and Redeemer of mankind.”

“I testify that the holy priesthood, both Aaronic and Melchizedek, with authority to act in the name of God, was restored to the earth by John the Baptist, and Peter, James, and John; that other keys and authority were subsequently restored; and that the power and authority of those various divine bestowals are among us today. Of these things I bear solemn witness to all within the sound of my voice. I promise in the name of the Lord that all who give heed to our message, and accept and live the gospel, will grow in faith and understanding. They will have an added measure of peace in their lives and in their homes and by the power of the Holy Ghost will speak similar words of testimony and truth.”[xi]

Spencer W. Kimball was a gentle, dedicated, humble man.  He exhibited such strength and energy that only a prophet of God may do.  He is a great example to me of working through challenges and trusting in the Lord.  In President Kimball’s words, “We must lengthen our stride and must do it now.”  Let that theme continue to ring true for each of us.
 


[i] Kimball, S. W. “The Cause Is Just and Worthy,” Ensign, 1974, 118

[ii] http://www.lightplanet.com/mormons/people/spencer_w_kimball.html

[iii] http://www.lightplanet.com/mormons/people/spencer_w_kimball.html  

[iv] http://www.lds.org/churchhistory/presidents/controllers/potcController.jsp?leader=12&topic=events

[v] http://www.lightplanet.com/mormons/people/spencer_w_kimball.html

[vi] http://www.lds.org/churchhistory/presidents/controllers/potcController.jsp?leader=12&topic=events

[vii] http://www.lightplanet.com/mormons/people/spencer_w_kimball.html 

[viii] http://www.lightplanet.com/mormons/people/spencer_w_kimball.html

[ix] http://www.lightplanet.com/mormons/people/spencer_w_kimball.html

[x] http://www.lds.org/churchhistory/presidents/controllers/potcController.jsp?leader=12&topic=facts

[xi] “Remarks and Dedication of the Fayette, New York, Buildings,” Ensign, May 1980, 54.  Italics added.

  

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Want to learn more about Spencer W. Kimball?  Check out these websites:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spencer_W._Kimball

http://www.lightplanet.com/mormons/people/spencer_w_kimball.html

http://www.lds.org/churchhistory/presidents/controllers/potcController.jsp?leader=12&topic=facts

http://www.lds.org/churchhistory/presidents/controllers/potcController.jsp?leader=12&topic=events

http://www.lds.org/churchhistory/presidents/controllers/potcController.jsp?leader=12&topic=testimony

http://www.lds.org/churchhistory/presidents/controllers/potcController.jsp?leader=12&topic=quotes

http://www.lds.org/churchhistory/presidents/controllers/potcController.jsp?leader=12&topic=multimedia

 

 

 

Good Timber August 9, 2007

Filed under: favorite poems — savvychic @ 9:01 am

Good Timber
by Douglas Malloch

The tree that never had to fight
For sun and sky and air and light,
But stood out in the open plain
And always got its share of rain,
Never became a forest king
But lived and died a scrubby thing.

The man who never had to toil
To gain and farm his patch of soil,
Who never had to win his share
Of sun and sky and light and air,
Never became a manly man
But lived and died as he began.

Good timber does not grow with ease:
The stronger wind, the stronger trees;
The further sky, the greater length;
The more the storm, the more the strength.
By sun and cold, by rain and snow,
In trees and men good timbers grow.

Where thickest lies the forest growth,
We find the patriarchs of both.
And they hold counsel with the stars
Whose broken branches show the scars
Of many winds and much of strife.
This is the common law of life.

 

Baby Slings: how to use one and why you should have one August 6, 2007

Filed under: baby,children,frugal,savvy thoughts — savvychic @ 11:50 am

The following is the information I give with the ring slings I make and sell.  I like the ring slings with lightly padded side rails and shoulder pad the best because of their versatility. (Just a note about how versitile and useful these slings are, I even made one for a cat and her owner!)  However, I also use hip slings, moby wraps, and maya slings depending on the situation I am in. I have used slings with both my children from newborn until about 35 pounds (which means I still use a sling with my 3 year old) and I have my slings ready to go for the upcoming new baby.

I believe a sling is worth it’s weight in gold!  It is the baby tool you will probably use most often and for the longest stretch of time.  So, for the money you invest in a sling, it may be the most frugal purchase you make for your baby.

About Your Sling

This versatile carrier enables you to keep baby close while giving you the freedom of both hands.  Wearing your baby soothes fussiness, promotes bonding, and is very comfortable for both of you.Unlike a front carrier, a baby sling distributes the baby’s weight across your shoulder and hip.  It does not stress your lower back.  Using the different positions, you may wear your baby using your sling from newborn till 35 pounds. Other comfort features include padded side rails, a shoulder pad, and one-hand adjustment. The sling is easy to put on and take off even when the baby has fallen asleep.  It is also compact enough to store in a diaper bag. 

How to use

There are at least five positions you may use to carry your child.  First slip the sling over your head and onto one of your shoulders.  The shoulder pad should fit right over your shoulder with the rings in your front.  The baby should rest in the sling at your waist or above.  Adjust the sling by holding your baby where you want her to ride while pulling down on the tail.  Important safety note:  Always keep some of the sling fabric between your baby’s body and your own. 

Cradle

Cradle carry Your infant will lie cradled in the sling with her head on the same side as the rings.  Hold your baby in one arm while opening the hammock with the other hand.  Lay your baby in the sling with her head close to the rings. This hold is useful for newborns and when breastfeeding.  When breastfeeding, you may cover your baby’s head with the sling fabric for privacy.

Cross-Cradle

cross-craddle Similar to the Cradle hold, your baby’s head lies on the opposite side of the rings.  This is also a common position for breastfeeding or sleeping babies. 

Snuggle

snuggle This position holds your baby upright and facing you.  This is a common hold for sleeping babies.  The upper rail will support your baby’s head against your body.  To decrease slack in the upper rail for more support, pull the fabric that corresponds to the upper rail through the rings.  This is called bubbling.  (Note: This is different than simply pulling down on the tail to adjust.) Variations: leave your baby’s feet inside the sling or let your baby’s feet ride outside of the lower rail.

Kangaroo

kangaroo carry Once your baby has good head and neck control, this may become your favorite position.  Hold your baby facing forward with one arm while opening the hammock with your other hand.  Gently slide your baby, bottom first, into the sling so that the baby’s back is against your chest.  Your baby may cross her legs Indian-style or hold her knees up to her chest. Reminder: Be sure there is sling fabric between your body and the baby’s. 

 Hip Carry

hip carry This is a great position for toddlers.  Just place your child on your hip and wear the sling around the baby’s back and bottom.  Your child’s legs will hang out of the sling.Variations: Place your arm behind your child so she is mostly on your front, or move your arm to your front and your child will ride more on your back.  However, do not wear your child completely on your back.  With the shoulder pad, there is too much slack and your child will not be secure. 

Sling Removal with Sleeping Baby

Babies often fall asleep in the sling.  Next to your body, your baby will feel so safe, warm and secure. This, combined with your movements, may lull her to sleep.  If you want to set your child down, bend over carefully until your baby is lying down on the surface, slide yourself out of the sling, and leave your baby fast asleep.  You may undo the sling if you like, or use the sling as a blanket.

Sling Care

Caring for your sling is simple: machine wash cool on the gentle cycle and line dry.

Safety and Warnings

Your baby sling is safe and secure when used properly.  Please read the following cautionary statements and follow the instructions. Failure to do so could result in serious injury to your child.

• Be aware that your sling has no straps holding your baby in. Your baby CAN climb out. Do not use the sling with an uncooperative child.

• Until you are very comfortable using the sling, always keep one hand on your child for safety.

• Always hold onto your child when bending over or moving quickly, you do not want your child falling out of the sling.

• Be careful going through doorways and around corners, or moving around anything sharp or hot. Your child’s head or limbs may extend beyond your body. 

 • Never cook while wearing your baby in the sling.

• Your sling is not to be used while participating in sports.

• Your sling IS NOT A CAR SEAT or bike seat. It is only to be used to carry your child.

• Do not put anything but your child in the sling.

• Always be aware of the rings as you take off or put on a sling when your baby is in it. The rings are created to hold a lot of weight and could hurt your baby if they were to hit her.

• Before each use, make sure that the fabric and seams are in good condition. If there are areas that look worn or frayed do not use it.