Saturday, November 23, 2013

the winner and a blogging break

Congratulations Michele!!! You are the winner of third friday giveaway!  I hope you love your new Christmas sign!

And now dear readers, its time for me to take a blogging break.  Things are feeling a little out of balance in my life right now.  It's been one of those (many) times that I need to reevaluate my priorities.   I want to enjoy every minute of this Christmas season with my family. Having Sadie gone has made me that much more aware of how short our time really is with our kids.  I wish all of you a wonderful holiday season filled with the peace and hope that our Savior's love brings.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Monday, November 18, 2013

good news

     We got a short email from Sadie today.  I won't post it, but will share her exciting news. The cute lady last week who told Sadie and her comps that they could not leave the Olde Oaks ward must have been doing some really serious praying this week.  Sadie's companion Sister Tau is getting a new companion, but Sadie and Sister Tofa (from Samoa) will be going back to the ward they were transferred from last week.  In other words, they will continue to get to work with Mary and the other people that they have come to know and love.  Blessings.
      Sadie has now been gone almost two months.  Some days are okay, some days are really, really hard.  On those really hard days, I say a silent prayer, and usually, get a confirmation (once again) that Sadie is in Houston for a reason.  Faith is so hard sometimes.
   

Saturday, November 16, 2013

third friday giveaway (on a saturday)

Are you seeing a theme this week?  So sorry.  It was one of those days yesterday.   And better late than never.
 Here is this month's giveaway.  Love this LARGE christmas sign. Love it's message.
 It measures 34" tall and 17" wide. 





Really, I think this would look so nice on your wall or over your fireplace!

          {How to enter}
1. Become a follower of terra's earth (by liking terra's earth on facebook OR via google friends connect.)
2. Leave a comment on this post telling me how you follow.
3. Also leave a contact email (with comment) if it's not linked to your profile (so I can let you know if you win:)

One winner will be selected from the comments using random.org and announced on November 23rd.

{the giveaway closes on november 22nd, 2013 at midnight}
{contest open to those residing in the intercontinental u.s.-no p.o. boxes please)

Thursday, November 14, 2013

drewby drewby doo

On November 11th, my veteran's day baby turned sixteen.


A few friends showed up to celebrate. 

 Do you see these cute girls? Is it any wonder Drew is smiling???

 Good thing he's got these girls to look out for him.

Happy Birthday Drewby.


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

missionary monday (on a tuesday)

Hello dear readers,
    Yesterday Drew, my "man-child" as I like to call him, turned sixteen.  Yesterday morning I woke up at 5:00 in the morning and thought, "We need to have a surprise party!"  And through the beauty of the group text message instant communication, and the help of Drew's friends, we did. I know, so unlike me not to plan this way ahead, but sometimes, I do like to be spontaneous. No really. But, more on that tomorrow and onto Sadie's email yesterday. 
     Sometimes lds congregations (what we call "wards") get reorganized. A common reason is when a ward has grown to large for capacity of a meeting house.  Sometimes there are other needs to.  I will let Sadie pick up from there...


Ok so for this week, as the title suggests, there have been some changes! So Sister Tofa Sister Tau and I are in the Olde Oaks ward, and yesterday while in church they said please come back at 1:30 for a special meeting, we will be reorganizing the wards! We were like WOAH! We heard rumors but now we knew it was true. So we came back and, now, we are in the new Ponderosa ward! Woot woot! We have our same bishop so that's good, and our second mom, Sister Dorciak-lemen, and her family will still be with us too. (She's the one that has the massive dog, we are always at her house.) BUT that means there is a possibility we could be split up because transfers are next week! AND OH MY GOODNESS I BETTER NOT BE TRAINING. I'm still a baby. But, I'll do whatever the Lord and President Pingree want me to do! 

For miracles this week, we've had several. Miss Mary, our "auntie" (she's the one who's 71) came to church and she loved it again! AND so did Ila , AND so did Veronica and Rick ! They all had such a good time, and when we got home, Veronica sent us a text saying "Rick said we have found our new church!" OH MY GOODNESS!! We really jumped for joy. Here's the catch: So everyone who came to church, all of our investigators included: Miss Mary,  Yolanda, Jarniesa, Angel and Larabon, have all been moved out of our boundries. Which means, we will no longer be teaching them. Haha, funny how that works huh? But the elders moved to the new Olde Oaks ward, so they will get to teach them. It was funny because one of the ladies was saying, "You cannot leave! No, no you can't because my kids are finally coming to church because of you! They need sisters! You need to call the Stake President and Bishop and have a word with them!"  

It's really interesting how the Lord works, because I was a little disappointed when we figured this all out. We've worked so hard with these investigators! But, I'm humbling myself and realizing how much we need to help the other area too.  I am realizing how much I need the Lord in my life, and how much he has guided me up until now, and I want him to guide me for the rest of my life. I am realizing how unselfish I need to be, and I am trying so hard to become like Him and develop His attributes. It is oh so hard, but as a sister put it, it's "wonderfully hard!" I know that if we pray to Heavenly Father, he answers us in his own way, and own time, and he does not ever leave us. 




Sadie's mission president and his wife, the Pingrees.  Can I just tell you how happy I feel knowing there are another mom and dad looking out for Sadie in Houston!? Seriously, warm fuzzies every time I see a pic like this. 

Mosquitos.  Just wait till their moms and dad show up this summer!

Happy Tuesday!!!



Friday, November 8, 2013

close encounters of the scorpion kind

Scorpions. We built our house right on top of them. If you've been reading my blog for awhile, you know that a story about them makes an occasionally appearance on a post.  And after last night, I decided I needed to record three of our most recent run-ins.  I know some day my kid's kids will appreciate this little tale.

 Last month Sierra was standing in the kitchen when she started making a strange noise that kind of sounded like "mommmm", but not really. When I asked, "What's wrong" and looked up, she was frozen with a panicked look on her face.  I walked over to where she was standing. She pointed to the front of her shirt.  There, sitting perfectly still, was a medium sized scorpion clinging to the fabric of her shirt. "Okay", I responded, trying to sound calm.  "Don't move, I just need to figure out how to get it off!".  About this time, the scorpion decided he wanted to move and started crawling  (very quickly) down Sierra's shirt and moving to the left (are you getting  freaked out yet?!).  So, I had to make a quick executive decision.  I took off my shoe and swiped the front of her shirt (thankfully) sending the scorpion to the ground where he was met with another blow from my shoe.  Sierra had no idea how the scorpion had ended up on her shirt, she just looked down and there it was.

SO gross right?!

It gets better...

Last week Drew walked from his bedroom into the kitchen and remarked, "It feels like something's in my shoe."  He took off his shoe and put it on the counter to inspect.  Two seconds later a very large scorpion crawled out completely intact (at least for a few seconds until it made contact with the same shoe).  Drew was not stung.

But, last night, I believe was the "crown jewel" of all our scorpions run-ins so far...

 I was cleaning the kitchen when Gentry (from the other room) started calling for me. Again, it kind of sounded like "mom" except distorted.  Then it turned into almost a wimpering cry.  I ran down to see what was wrong.  I stepped into the bathroom.  Gentry was white and pointing to her foot.  There, between her middle two toes, was a baby scorpion (the most venomous kind)  wedged head down with it's stinger sticking up between the toes.  How you ask? I have no idea!!! I mean really?!? But, there was no time to discuss the, "how did this happen?" because I was on to  (in my mind of course)  "HOW IN THE FREAK (mormon swear word) AM I GOING TO GET IT OUT WITHOUT STINGING HER???" Gentry, bless her ever faithful heart, was headed in a better direction as she asked with a shaking voice,  "Mom, can we have a prayer?"  "Absolutely!" I replied and followed with a quick and sincere request..."Please bless Gentry to be able to be calm and not be stung."  Then, it was time for action. I yelled for Sierra's help as back up and we designed a plan...This is how it was suppose to go down:    I would slide piece of card stock under the scorpion's stinger and on top Gentry's toe (to protect it)  and then Sierra would grab the scorpion's tail with tweezers and pulled it out. It seemed like it might just work. We all took a deep breath, and then on the final count several  things happened simultaneously.  Sierra pulled, the scorpion didn't budge, and Gentry went into full blown panic mode, pulling her foot away, screaming and trying to shake off the scorpion.  Sierra and I sat and watched in shocked, helpless silence.  Suddenly, after one final, violent shake of her foot the scorpion flew off, and skidded across the floor. I took vengeance with my shoe and sent him off to meet with the previous casualties and  then ran to give Gentry a hug and remind her to breath.  She was crying uncontrollably and I feared the worst.  But finally, she managed to calm down enough to get out, "It didn't sting me!" Okay, so the "calm" part of prayer request may not have materialized, but the "not be stung" part was answered with a huge blessing.

And btw, we really do love having visitors here in Arizona, and in the six years we've lived in this house,  I'm the only one that's been stung. And if you come in the winter (which is the best time anyway) most of our cohabiters are in hibernation.  And we promise to take you to the grand canyon to offset any scorpion fear you may experience.  I do love Arizona, just not the scorpions.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

sack cloth and blue birds

November has finally arrived, and I am ready to bake.  A couple of months ago I started using Blue Bird flour.  It's excellent for baking and there's something about the colorful cloth sack that it comes in that makes me happy. Maybe it's just from thinking about my pioneer ancestors, and a simpler time.  I am seriously in love with these bags.
I always save them. I decided yesterday that one of these recycled sacks would provided the perfect wrapping for the cookies I was sending to Sadie.
  
The great thing about these sacks is that they fade to different shades after washing, giving a couple of different looks.  The one above kept most of its color. 
But, I also love this one, which faded quite a bit more.  It just seems to vary with each dye-lot.  I'm always looking for fun ways to wrap things. Cause let's face it ladies,  Christmas is only fifty days away!


Monday, November 4, 2013

miracles


Sadie's email this morning. It's going to be a beautiful day. 



There's no way that i'ts P-day again! Holy toledo! Haha how is my favorite family in the whole wide world?? Ok Mom I sent you a really long letter on Halloween all about all the question you had, it should get there today :)
I have so much to tell you about! Honestly this week was just like a tap on the shoulder from Heavenly Father saying "Hey, I really am watching out for you and I know that you're trying!" Ok so let's see- So we went to go check out a referral from the Elders on Wednesday (I think) and so we drove over to this lady's home. She is 71 years old and she is amazing beyond all belief. So we knocked on her door, she let us in and we just started talking about her life. She's had it pretty rough, her son passed away, she had a divorce, and raised 8 kids by herself. Her claim is "I did not raise these kids by myself, together me and God did." She is so humble and I really had no idea just what kind of miracle we were about to experience. We invited her to church and she came, and after church we went to go teach her. We brought one of our ward missionaries, Sister Santana, who is 60 and quite the riot haha. But she is a really good missionary. So we went in and had some small talk for awhile. Sister Santana came and we started the lesson. We felt prompted to talk about the Plan of Salvation and it turned out amazing. (Keep in mind, I was fasting because I felt like I really needed to) We got towards the end of the lesson, talking about the Spirit World, and the three kingdoms of glory, and she started to cry. We just sat there for a minute until she gathered some words to speak. She said "This makes so much sense to me. When I divorced my husband, I thought I was going to Hell. I've tried all my life and now I know exactly what I've been looking for, and this is it. I know this is true. I've been to so many churches and I moved out here to Houston looking for His answers. When I first saw y'all, I thought you were angels. In fact, you are my angels. Thank you, thank you so much." 
She went on to talk about how she had cancer, her daughter is being tested for breast cancer, and so many other trials. But she has been faithful to God her whole life. I honestly was in shock the whole time because the Spirit in the room was so strong, and I couldn't talk for the remainder of the lesson. 

On top of that, we went to see Veronica this week. Thank you for all of your prayers, because a miracle happened. Her husband kept saying no to her coming to church. We left the lesson feeling good though, and suddenly she came running out and said "Sisters, sisters! I asked Rick and he said Yes!! We are coming to church!" We were so excited I could not even explain it. It was stake conference, so they came to the adult session on Saturday, but then they didn't come Sunday... we think Rick didn't want to come. But still miracles! Everywhere! And another investigator, Ila , came too! And Phylisia , a 22 year old mom with 3 kids, and the less active family, and Mary! Seriously so many blessings this week! 
We had Zone Meeting on Thursday, it was the best meeting I've been to here so far. Our Zone leader read this poem, by an Elder who was in the Houston mission: (Sorry it's long) 

HE'S BEEN THERE BEFORE
By Elder Troy Whittle,
Texas, Houston 
Mission
The alarm rings at 6:30; I stumble to my feet.
 I grab my  companion's bedding and pull off his sheet.
A groan fills the room, is it  already time to arise?
 It seems like just a second ago I was able to  shut my eyes.
The morning activities follow - study, prayer, and  such.
When it's time to leave the apartment, you feel you haven't  accomplished much.
"We have a super day planned," my comp says with a  grin.
 I lowly utter a faithless breath, "Yeah, if anyone lets us  in.
"With the word of God and my faithful Schwinn, we ride off in the  street
Prepared to face another day of humidity and heat.
It's 9:30 in the  evening, the day is almost through;
My companion and I are riding home, not  accomplishing what we thought to do.
We ride up to the mailbox, hoping to  receive a lot.
Only to look inside and hear my echo reverberate "Air  Box."
We go up to our apartment, the day is now complete.
The only thing  to show for our work is a case of blistery feet.
It's past 10:30 PM, my  companion is fast asleep.
Silence engulfs me all about and I begin to  weep.
In the midst of sadness, I kneel down to pray;
I need to talk to  Father, but I'm not sure what to say.
"Oh, Father," I begin, "What happened  to us today?
I thought we'd teach somebody, but everyone was away.
My  hands, my aching hands - worn, hurt and beat;
If our area was any smaller,  we'd have knocked every street .."
"Why on missions are the days so much alike?
The only difference about today was the flat tire on my bike.
Will  you send some cooler weather? The heat is killing me.
I sweat so bad, it gets  in my eyes; It's very hard to see."
"Why do I have to wear a helmet, isn't  your protection enough?
People always laugh at me and call me stupid  stuff.
Please send us investigators so I may give them what they lack;
I  want to give them Books of Mormon, the weight of them hurts my back."
"And  what about my family? They don't have much to say,
I'm sick of not hearing  from home, day after day after day.
Oh Father, why am I here, am I just  wasting time?
Sometimes I just want to go home, I'm sorry but that's on my  mind."
"My companion, Heavenly Father, what are you giving me?
The way he  rides his bicycle, I don't think he can see.
Now you have it, I can't go on  I don't know what to do;
That, my Father in Heaven, is the prayer I have for  You.
"My prayer now finished I stand up, then jump right into bed.
I need  my rest for tomorrow; we have another long day ahead.
Sleep starts to  overtake me; I seem to drift away,
Then it seems a vision takes me to another  time and another day.
I'm standing alone on the hill, the view is very  nice;
A man walks towards me and says, "My name is Jesus Christ."
Tears of  joy well up inside, I fall down to His feet,
"Arise," He states, "Follow Me  to the shade - you and I need to speak.
"My attentions toward the Savior,  total and complete.
He says, "Your mission is similar of what happened to  Me,
I understand how you feel, I know what you're going through;
In fact  it would be fair to say I've felt the same as you."
"I even know how you felt when no one listened to you.
At times I felt not quite sure what else I could  do.
I know you don't like to ride a bicycle, for you a car would be  sweet;
Just remember the donkey I rode wasn't equipped with 21 speeds."
"I  understand you don't like sweating, in fact it's something you hate;
I  remember when I sweat blood from every pore, oh the agony was great!
I see  you don't like your companion - you'd rather have someone else.
I once had a  companion named Judas who sold my life for wealth."
"It's hard to wear a  helmet and have people make fun of you.
I remember when they put thorns on my  head and called me King of the Jews.
So you feel burdened down by the weight  of your pack.
I recall how heavy the cross was when they slammed it on my  back."
"Your hands hurt from tracting and knocking on doors all day.
I  guess when they pounded nails into mine, I ached in a similar way.
It's hard  not to hear from home when your family's not there to see;
I lost my  communication on the cross and cried, "Father, why hast Thou forsaken Me."
He  embraced me with His arms, His light filled me with His love,
With tears in  my eyes I watched as He went back to the Father above.
I stood with awe and  wonder when a beep rang in my head,
I listened and heard the alarm, then  realized I was in my bed.
My companion let out a groan, "6:30 already, no  way!"
I sat up and said, "Come on, I'll even carry your scriptures  today!"
No matter what we go through, when we feel we can’t take  more;
Just stop and think about Jesus Christ. He has been there before.

There was not an eye dry in the room after he read that. I felt ready to go and tract every house no matter what, after he read that. We felt as a companionship, we could do better at "Power Hour". Now, power hour is unique to the Texas Houston mission. It's where we go to someone's house for dinner at 5, ask them to pray for us and if they can, come out with us between 6-7. EVERYONE in the mission does this, so imagine all the prayers we get at that hour! So we did that one day, had a family pray for us, and out we went. At the end of it, we didn't have much luck but we felt determined. We saw a man leaving his house, and so we ran up to talk to him. The more we talked, the more we realized he had been prepared to talk to us. Finally he said " I've really been looking for a church lately. I just want to feel the Spirit more." Blessings!! On Blessings! With more blessings on top!! 
I cannot describe the happiness and joy I have felt this week. I know when we are faithful, even during the hard times, the rewards we reap are far greater than the seeds we sow. I love to serve and to be a representative of Christ. There is no greater joy. I love you all and thank you for all your prayers! We can bring forth his word when we work together!!
All my love,
Sister Sadie Maughan


Sadie claims these two almost beat the elders in basketball sometimes:)








Happiest Monday!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

trick or treat

A fall festival.

 And onto halloween morning, when two super heroes emerged.  Armed with smiles and target underwear.


A halloween tradition.

And some costume prep courtesy of Sierra.

 Presenting, from left to right...Reyna (from Percy Jackson's Camp Jupiter), a teenager, and Super Girl.

And Gregg (being Gregg) with his very patient wife.

 A pumpkin with attitude.



And this one...Drew, who wasn't dressing up, but suddenly showed up transformed. How I love this teenager.

And Sierra also seemed to morph, from Super Girl, to a Luchadora (think "Nacho Libre").

The Tweens.

The youngers.
 Here's to hoping your kids got all of your favorite halloween candy.
I think we've got enough chocolate to safely get us through until christmas.