Friday, May 31, 2013

We have a little bookworm in the making

Found on
Lily loves to be read to, and I read to her quite often.  Last week, Lily grabbed one of her books off the book shelf, brought it over and plopped down right on my lap.  Usually, this means, “Read this book to me Mommy.”  But this time, she was whining and closing the book and turning pages and screaming and trying to pull the book from my hands.  I was trying to be patient, but I didn’t know what she wanted!  So, finally, fed up with the way she was acting, I just let her hold the book and sit on my lap.  THEN SHE STARTED READING IT TO ME!!  I was stunned by her adorable-ness.  Now she can't get her little button nose out of her books.  Which makes me extremely happy because books are a fabulous!  I think we have a little bookworm on our hands.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Go Class of 2013!!

My little sister-in-law flipped the tassel last night, and is now officially a high school graduate!  WAHOO Christyl!!

But I am getting ahead of myself, let's start at the beginning.  I have lots of pictures documenting her special day.

First her hair, because, seriously, hair is important.

Oh!  That picture makes me giggle.  We didn't really leave her hair like that.

After the giving of gifts, we had a lot of time to kill before the graduation ceremony.  So we ate lunch, put the kids down for naps and played a game of Beyond Balderdash.  Which I lost, miserably.

Found at

As we were finishing up the game we realized-- WE NEEDED TO BE ON THE ROAD!  Like, 20 minutes ago.  So we rushed to get dressed, hurried out the door and scrambled into the van.  The ride was a little heated because "every other driver was deliberately getting in our way just to slow us down"-- or so it felt.  Christyl was supposed to be at the Glendale Civic Center at 4 PM to get instruction on how to "walk" and what not.  But . . . 4 o' clock came and went, 4:30 came and went and just as the clock struck 4:48 Mom and Christyl breathlessly walked through the Civic Center doors.  Ok, so maybe they weren't breathless, but it was still pretty intense.

After all that, things seemed pretty lame, sitting around waiting til 5:30, for them to open the doors.  I know I was starting to question if 5:30 was ever going to come.  I was completely unprepared for the mad dash the moment the doors were opened.  CRAZYNESS!!  AJ was in the lead and three different times he was blocked from procuring us seats.  People would appear from nowhere and dash to sit down before AJ could, or throw their purse onto the seat and one girl even jumped, JUMPED, from behind AJ and landed on the seat AJ was going for.  Mad house, I tell you.  After that AJ got a little more serious, and thankfully we found five seats, all together.

After 30 long minutes, was the presentation of the graduates. . .

On with all the "boring" graduation stuff.  Thankfully, all the talks were short and the musical numbers entertaining.  Then began the reading of names, which Samuel made extremely entertaining because he repeated every name and then would scream and cheer as loud as he could.

The big moment: Chrisyl's turn to walk across the stage and receive her high school diploma!

Now, I have to make a serious comment, this was, by far, the shortest graduation I have EVER been to.  The ceremony started at 6 and was over by 6:45.  We were all greatly impressed.

Congratulations Chrsityl!!

And to celebrate, we ate dinner at El Pollo Loco, because it is kinda a big deal in the Smith family.  Booyah!!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Temple Sealings and Empty Mason Jars

Today, I want to share an inspiring quote I stumbled across earlier this morning.  I found it on THIS blog, but the quote comes from S. Michael Wilcox's book "House of Glory: Finding Personal Meaning in the Temple".

“My wife often cans peaches and pears in the fall. A great deal of work is necessary just to prepare the fruit. Then, once it is prepared, she puts it into jars, places the seals on, twists the lids tightly into place, and sets the jars in boiling water. Then she waits for the seals to set.
She has performed this operation dozens of times with hundreds of jars. In all that time I have never seen her seal an empty jar. Unless the jar is loaded with fruit, a seal is not placed. I doubt if anyone, among the thousands who can fruit every year, has ever sealed an empty jar. There must be something to preserve or the seal has no significance. 
The sealing of temple covenants is similar. When we are married at the altars of the temple, the Lord, from one point of view, gives us an empty jar. Then he instructs us to fill it with the wonderful fruits of righteous marriage. We fill it with love and compromise and forgiveness and joy and peace and shared trails; we fill it with all the things of life, all the good fruit. As we keep our covenants, returning often to renew them as we work for the dead, the jar begins to fill. As we grow older and our love deepens, we desire to preserve forever all the good we have stored. 
Our abiding in the covenant allows the Lord to place the seal on our covenant relationship and preserve the fruits of our righteousness for all eternity. This is the same for all temple covenants. Nobody seals an empty jar; neither does the Lord seal empty covenants. First there must be fruit to preserve.”
 This is my goal for my marriage with AJ, and as it was so wisely put on Seth Smith's blog...
"Eternal marriages are not made at the altar. They are made by the things that you do together and for each other every day thereafter. [Spend] your lifetime filling your jar with all of the sweet things of your life together."  -The Snyders

Friday, May 24, 2013

The Smith Siblings Dance

I have mentioned a couple times, the Smith family reunion we went to, all of last week.  The WHOLE reason we had a reunion at all, was for a very special dance.

In the Gila Valley, is the Safford Dance Academy, and all of AJ's siblings, including AJ, learned to dance there.  The Safford Dance Academy is kinda a big deal in the Smith family.
Well, about 7 years ago a crazy-awesome idea formed, the origin of the thought is unknown to me, and the thought was, "All of the Smith kids--talking about AJ and his siblings-- should do a big dance, all together, for Mom."  Mom clung to it like a lifeline, and decided the year Christyl graduated she was going to have her dance.
2013, was the lucky year.  Jamie, the oldest, choreographed the dance-- she is super talented like that.  And everyone learned the whole dance in FOUR days-- they are seriously talented like that.  But Amanda takes the prize though, because she danced pregnant!!

Just remember, this dance was seven years a week in the making...

From right to left, (at the beginning of the dance):  Matt (striped shirt), Christyl (white dress), AJ (the sexy one), April (grey dress), Amanda (grey cardigan) and Jamie (black shirt)

"We love you Mom!!!"

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Samuel tells Grandma about Disneyland

Honestly, I didn't think Samuel would remember anything about our trip to Disneyland because he was so young.  I was astonished, when we pulled up the pictures from our trip to show Grandma, a whole month later, and he started describing all the rides!!  And he was right!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Riding the "Twisty Thing" at the park...

This, is the "Twisty Thing".

It lives at the Daley Park.
On Monday, for FHE, we went to the park, and we rode it.
We had never seen anything like it before.
So, of course, we had to give it a try!

I hadn't laughed so hard in a long time.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

The Car Crash: Did that really just happen?!

Two words. . . Reunion and Globe.  That is how it all happened.

We were just driving along, chatting it up with Matthew and enjoying the beautiful Arizona landscape.  Occasionally, I snapped pictures from the passenger seat, with our new camera, trying to figure her out.

As we were passing through Globe, AZ, AJ decided he wanted to point out the "Globe, globe" to me so I could take a picture.  The speed limit in Globe is only 35 MPH and AJ slowed down so he could point the globe out to me.  He looked away from the road for two seconds to say, "There it is.  Right under the bridge."  And before he could look back,
Our left front tire hit the stinking median!  Stuck in the middle of the road, Betsy, our car, wouldn't go.  And because of the popped tire, we couldn't put her in neutral and push her out of the center of the street.  Thankfully, three angels came to our rescue and towed us off the road, while the officer-- of course there was an officer-- followed.  As it turned out, the two men who towed us, happened to be "auto claims adjusters".  (That means they determine what the cost of repair is going to be.)  They guesstimated around $2,000.
Freak out moment!! 
The officer had to put together an "accident report", for insurance purposes he said.  He gathered all our names, birthdays and where we'd been sitting during the accident.  AJ and I were SO grateful when he decided not to issue us a ticket, because he figured "we were already paying enough."  Bless that man!

The damage: our tire exploded, the rim bent, the tire well is now misshapen, our driver door hardly opens, the steering shaft is most likely snapped and the transmission possibly blown.

My Dad made the 90 minute drive, from Queen Creek, in his big truck with a trailer, to pick up our car and take it back to the valley for us.

And my Mother-in-law made the 75 minute drive from Thatcher to pick us up and get us the rest of the way to Thatcher for our family reunion.

What a blessing it is to have such great family members, who will drop what they are doing to help us in our time of need.  Thank you, thank you!  We couldn't have done it with out you.

Thank heavens for family!

Monday, May 20, 2013

Eagle Scout

Brent is an Eagle Scout!!

Brent with Grandma and Grandpa Gurr.

I am so proud of my little brother.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Go-Go Goat Cart

This is Patches. . .
She is a goat.
And she can pull a CARt.
(See what I did there?!)

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Interesting Facts about Little Mormon Mommy . . .

All time Pageviews: 8,631
From March 31, 2012 to May 14, 2013

Most Popular Posts:                         Pageviews:
1.             AJ and Samuel + Emily = 4                                                   487
2.             Journey to Audiology                                                          250
3.             Pregnancy Miracle: Home-made Maternity Pants                       179
4.             Walking, walking and more walking.                                        158
5.             Anything Toy Story                                                              133
(Click on title to view the post.  Hint, hint.)

Audience:                                       Pageviews:
1.             United States (Royal Blue)                                                   6962
2.             Russia (Red)                                                                       486
3.             Germany (Teal)                                                                    126
4.             United Kingdom (Lime Green)                                                116
5.             India (Green)                                                                        99
6.             Canada (Gold)                                                                      66
7.             Australia (Pink)                                                                    52
8.             Philippines (Maroon)                                                            49
9.             South Korea (Yellow)                                                            37
10.           Pakistan (Purple)                                                                  16

Shout out to all my international friends!!
Thank you for stopping by Little Mormon Mommy.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Newest Family Pictures (2013) and the Gilbert temple

A very BIG thank you, Jamie. :D

And check out the Gilbert temple!!

The following pictures are NOT mine, I found them HERE on the Gilbert, AZ LDS Temple Blog, and all credit goes to Brooks Crandell.  (Who happened to be in my ward growing up, and his wife was one of my young women's leaders.)  I hope he doesn't mind my sharing his photography, but I wanted to share them with all my family and friends here on my blog.

I just love to see the temple.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

SOLUTION to the Riddle.

Has to be this guy.

Had his cup been white, it would have been too obvious, and the man behind him would have already said something.  Clearly, he can conclude, his cup has to be black.

Did anyone figure it out?!

Friday, May 10, 2013

The Riddle ...

Gina sent us this riddle-- AJ was the only one of us to figure it out.  Can you?

Five men crash landed on a remote island in the Atlantic Ocean.  Four were knocked unconscious as they tumbled around in the falling plane; the fifth was unlucky enough to remain conscious during the whole ordeal.  For an unknown reason, the fifth man, being the sort of man that he was, decided to bury the other four men neck deep in the sand, rendering them immobile.  He buried three in a row, one looking at the back of the other’s head, and the last off to the side by himself.  For intimidation purposes, he constructed a very intimidating tower out of airplane scraps and bamboo to separate the two groups.  Lastly, he placed two white cups and two charred black cups, one on each man’s head.  Patiently, he waited for them all to regain consciousness.

Gina's illustration she sent with the riddle.

As they awoke, one by one, the fifth man stood over them, with his gun pointed to their head and commanded them to remain silent or he would kill them.  (Of course, he had a gun, being the kind of man he was and all.)  Once they were all awake, he calmly explained the rules of his game.  First, there was no talking.  Second, if any man could tell him the color of his OWN cup, black or white, he would set them all free.  Third, if you guessed wrong, you got shot.

Only one of the four men can tell, without a doubt, what color his cup is.  Who is it?

(The story was a little boring, I might have embellished it a little.)

Heads up:
I will be publishing the answer to this riddle tomorrow, May 11th, at 7:00 AM.  (Unless you all would like for me to post it sooner...?  Comment if so.)  Check back tomorrow if you think you know the solution to the riddle!!  Good luck.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Rest In Pieces

Mr. Panasonic Camera
July 2005 to May 5, 2013
You will be loved and missed, my friend.

My camera died . . .

Need I say more?

Alligator TEARS!!

(It has been brought to my attention that, in the picture above, Mr. Camera appears to have "exploded-- not just died."  Touché.  It does appear that way, he died peacefully-- there were no explosions-- and then AJ dissected his body.)

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

My Realization: "Happiness is not a destination, it is a way of life." -Hinckley

Random Riddle:  What does 0 say to 8?

I have been pretty miserable lately, not a I-had-something-unexpected-and-tragic-happen, but a really-negative-opinion-of-myself, like, body image, sort of miserable.  There was a time, when I was young (okay, I am still young) and confident, and genuinely, exceptionally happy.  Every time I looked in the mirror . . . I liked what I saw- I was beautiful and I knew it.  Remembering how confident and comfortable I used to be in my own skin, seemed to make my misery even more potent.  On the verge of unbearable a handful of times.

Forget Me Not flower
found at
One day, my birthday actually, my Mom and I were chatting, and she shared a thought with me, which made a huge difference on my perspective.  In Alma 22:18, King Lamoni is praying to the Lord, and he promises, "I will give away all my sins to know thee."  My Mom wisely commented that sins (actions) could be changed to Satan's lies (thoughts).  It would then read, "I will give away all Satan's lies to know thee."  This really struck home for me!  I cannot believe God and Lucifer at the same time, it is not possible.  The scriptures state, "No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one and despise the other." (Matthew 6:24)

One of Satan's lies that A LOT of women hold strongly to, myself included, is, they aren't enough if they don't have a sexy, athletic, skinny, fill-in-the-blank body. . . the list can go on.  And this negative thought, has been the origin of my misery for almost three years now, because I have been giving it such great control over my attitude.

There is a story told of an old Cherokee teaching his grandson about life. “A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy.
“It is a terrible fight, and it is between two wolves. One is evil: he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.”
He continued, “The other is good: he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you—and inside every other person too.”
The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?”
The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”
(Elder Shayne M. Bowen, Agency and Accountability, Sept. 2012)

 Before either of my children I was quite confident with my body, but since the birth of my two children, all of that has dramatically changed.  I started comparing my weaknesses to others strengths. I started feeding the wrong wolf.

The video below, was also a huge perspective-changer.  I stumbled across it in a time of need, and it has helped me tremendously on my road of discovery about true happiness.

(Clicking Can Change Your Life by Hilary Weeks, found on YouTube by BillionClicksOrg)

It is easy now, to look in life's rear view mirror and understand why I was such a confident and genuinely happy person before.  My cup was always half full, I saw the best in everything, I filled my mind with positive thoughts, about myself and others.  President Gordon B. Hinckley so wisely stated, "There is nothing that dulls a personality so much as a negative outlook."

I am rededicating myself to the fight against negativity.  For "feelings of worth come when a woman follows the example of the Master." -Elder Nelson (Woman-- of Infinite Worth, 1989) 

I am going to choose to love myself.  I am going to believe and follow my Master and Savior.  And I will choose to live happily. . . ever after.

Answer:  Nice belt!!

Monday, May 6, 2013

A Pinterest Success Story.

I was wasting time on Pinterest, when I found these two adorable ideas for throw pillows:

Found at
Found at


But I didn't know which one to make for our bedroom.  I debated forever before I decided ...

REVERSIBLE PILLOWS-- I could have them both!

I just barely finished them, and already they are adorning my bed.  I'm in love!

Scrabble tiles or pillows?

And on the reverse side ...
Ooooh, la la!  Fancy pantsy.

These pillows are all calligraphy on the front, and Scrabble on the back!!

By the way, these are SO beyond easy to make.  Just a brown, square throw pillow and some black fabric paint and BAM!!  You are done.  Easy as pie.