Graduating YW at Camp

I love it when a graduating laurel expresses an interest in attending camp one more year.  I think if they desire to be at camp one more year - let them have one more week of spiritual richness and testimony growing before they head off to college.  We have a young women who is graduating and wants to come to camp.  She also loves photography.  We called her to be the camp photographer.  It gets her to camp, but it also trains her to be an adult leader.  What could be better!?!


Do it Better - Not Faster

We bought our home last summer.  The house was built in 1955.  Hasn't been updated.  Not once.  We have a lot to do to update and upgrade the home to what we want.  As my husband and I were making a master plan of what to do and when I said something that struck me.  I simply said - I would rather take longer and do it right, than to do it quick. 

As I thought about this - I thought how applicable this is to the Gospel.  How often do we whip through the Book of Mormon just to say we read it?  But did you?  Did you get out of it what you could have?  How often do we see Beehives earning their Young Womenhood Recognition award?  When in reality the Personal Progress program is meant to last all through your young women years. Did we just hurry through it just to get it done?  Or did we really get out of it what it is meant to teach us?

Doing it better is far better than doing it faster when it comes to remodeling homes, as well as in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.


The Unexpected

While serving in the Provo temple last Thursday, something very unexpected happened.  I had the opportunity to get to know a young lady more than we usually do.

She was next in line to be baptized.  She stepped into the font.  She goes under the water.  As she is coming up we notice her face is covered in blood.  She had gotten a bloody nose.  She is quickly helped out of the font.  Towels soaked in watered down blood.  We help her into the locker room where more towels are used, but to no cure.  Her bloody nose ended up lasting over 30 minutes.

She needed a ride home.  There was no way we were going to let her walk home - with what seemed to be tremendous blood loss.  Although she lives close, we wanted to make sure she was okay before we turned her over to her roommates to care for her.  It was nearing the end of the shift.  I offered to take her home.  She refused for about two seconds until she stood up and was light headed.  Luckily we keep some juice cans and crackers near by for this exact purpose.  We made sure she had some fluid and nutrition in her before we left.  While driving her home I made sure of a couple things: make sure she tells her parents about this so if it happens again soon, they will know something may be concerning about her health; make sure she took it easy for the rest of the day; and to ask her name.  Kate.  What a sweet young lady you are.  Return to the temple soon - we want to see you.

Lake Time at Camp

If you have a lake at your girls camp - here is a fun idea to do while there:

Buy rubber duckies.  On each one write a YW value.  Sling shot them into the lake.  Have the girls paddle around the lake collecting these ducks - trying to get a complete set of the values.  Hand this complete set off to a leader and try to collect another set.  If they find a duck with a value they already have, toss it back.  See what age group or ward can get the most complete sets.

There are several places to buy rubber ducks.  Here is one website I found - CLICK HERE.

Smart Grocery Shopping

A little while ago I was with a group of friends.  Somehow we got on the topic of grocery shopping and how much each of us spends each month.  I was STUNNED when one of them said she spends about $1200 a month on groceries.  I think I had to pick my chin up off the ground.  I could not believe she spent so much money on groceries.  She asked how much I spend each month (we have about the same number of people in our homes).  I told her between $300-$400 a month.  She couldn't believe it.  She asks me what I do to only spend that much.  I really didn't have an answer for her right then.  It was just how it was.

When I got home I started thinking about it.  I really do smart grocery shop.  Here is what I do - maybe it can help you streamline your grocery bill.

My monthly grocery shopping looks like this:
*** 1x a week I go to Costco to buy mainly eggs, bread, milk, and some other misc items.  I know what I need before I go (by making a list) and I STICK TO THE LIST.  There are weeks I only buy milk, and other weeks where I have to buy butter, or some other item that isn't needed weekly.  That's it.  You don't have to leave Costco with a cart full of stuff every time you enter it's doors.  Get only what you need and move on. (About $30 a trip - occasionally a little more when I need other items besides food).
*** 1-2x a month I go to Wal-Mart.  Seriously - I am not there every week!  I make a list of what I need and I stick to it.  I make sure I am buying enough for at least 2 weeks - and I only buy what I know will be eaten, and usually it lasts longer than that. (Usually under $100 each time).
***  I rarely have to make runs to the store other than my regular shopping days.  On my refrigerator I always have a piece of paper where I write down items I need as I notice I need them.  This way my list is complete when I head to the store, and I do not forget items - making me have to run to the store later. 

There are 3 main things that keep my monthly food bill down.

1.  Eat what you buy.  Very rarely do I throw out rotten food that was in the fridge that didn't get eaten - because I do not let it get to that point.  If I have several meals with leftovers hanging out in the fridge, dinner that night will be a modge podge of food.  I will add one or two items to make it complete, but I make sure we have as little waste as possible. So, eat what we have.

2.  Make a menu.  Even if it isn't complete for every single day of the week.  I usually have at least 4 days a week planned ahead.  I usually jot down meals I want to have a month at a time.

3.  Do not eat out often.  The more you do, the more you want to.  And this costs a lot of money and gets you out of the habit of cooking at home.

Those are 3 main points of how to spend less.  Other things I recommend are:
--Make things from scratch.  This is much healthier and costs less.  By making it yourself you can really cut down on sodium and fat.  With the internet, you can find oodles of fantastic recipes that you can make yourself.
--Don't over buy.  Buy what you need for that week, but be thorough.  The more times you have to run to the grocery store, the more you will spend.
--Don't buy crap.  Stay away from excessive amounts of candy, pop, big bags of chips, etc.
--I always have grab and go snacks ready - like 100% juice pouches, applesauce tubes, cheese cubes, yogurt, string cheese, small single serve chip bags, etc.  When you buy pre-portioned healthy snack items, these do cost a little more, but you and your kids will eat healthier all around.  When you buy healthy, you eat healthy.

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