Sunday, July 29, 2012

I delight in wise words and best friends.

I have the world's best friends.  I am so blessed.  One of my best friends, just happened (For the record, I don't believe in coincidences) to be so timely in sending me the following quote.  It couldn't have come at a better time.  

"My dear sisters, do not pray for tasks equal to your abilities, but pray for abilities equal to your tasks. Then the performance of your tasks will be no miracle, but you will be the miracle."

President Monson R.S. Broadcast Sept. 2007

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

I delight in my pioneer ancestry.

Typically my post's on the 24th of July are about my Mom's birthday since, afterall it is today.  However, I've decided to save that for later (as I have documented the day quite well--but have yet to upload it all to my computer) and to instead share what the 24th of July, also known as Pioneer Day in Utah, means to me this year. 

At the beginning of the year, I felt some urgency in figuring out my family history--in pictures.  As a part of that project, I have scanned a lot of pictures and documents, this tribute is one of them.  

Joseph Strong (my great-great grandpa, i think) is someone I have come to learn a lot more about this year.  Craig came in touch with some relative (yeah, see why I need help with the whole family history thing?) who sent some documents regarding Joseph and his family's journey to America.  It is incredible.  

I am grateful to have this as just a part of my heritage.  There are so many other lines of my family and details I am coming to put together, slowly but surely.

Faith in every footstep.

Monday, July 23, 2012

I delight in when my Mission President came home!

Last weekend was a BLAST!

I always delight in my mission, but really, today I'm so nostalgic about it!  Sunday I got to hear my mission president (technically my second mission president) report on his mission!  The last time I saw President and Sister Simpson was two years ago when my mom and I went back to visit my mission, it was such a happy and incredible day.  See picture below.

And this (on the right) is from soon after they arrived in the mission, okay, the second time I got to see them at a zone conference in Annapolis Royal.

And so, this weekend Cherilyn, Katie, Ashley and I took a little roadtrip north where we met up with Jen and Heather and had a super Saturday adventure in Idaho Falls (or "IF" as the locals call it).

First stop:  Idaho Falls Temple!

Sisters Toliver, Reid, Brandley, Crane and of course me, McQuivey
The Idaho Falls Temple was the 8th operating temple in the Church.  So, that makes it unique because of some of its features that other/newer temples don't have (four-stage progressive).  It was dedicated by President David O. McKay in October 1940.  It was so beautiful and having the opportunity to be surrounded by mission sisters was fantastic.  As a missionary, the temple was always home.  When I returned from my mission, I felt the same way about the temple.  No matter where we are in the world, no matter how far from our families, the Lord's House/Temple is always home.

After the temple, we wandered along the greenway of the Snake River--it has beautiful gardens!

Wandering the garden paths...beautiful!  Seriously, if you're ever passing through Idaho Falls, get off the historic exit and wander the greenway.  It has some beautiful gardens, paths, and the water makes it all just perfect.
Add in the "falls" of Idaho Falls and the temple in the background and well...its SO beautiful!
Shadow Picture in the Snake River!

(borrowed this one from Jen's facebook--love this picture)

After lunch, and a walk, it was time for ice cream!  What a colorful selection!
Finally, we went back to Jen's family's house--is this not the most awesome barn?  And I'm SO glad we didn't break their trampoline while trying to capture this awesome shot below (also via Jen, thank you!)

How to cross the ditch to get to the daisy's?  Hum, such deep thought.  :)
I wish this photo captured the lighting a little better, but alas, my iphone has its limits.  But just imagine the glow, it was SO beautiful!

Can I just say how wonderful it was to see President with his adorable grandchildren! They love him so much!  When all of us sisters walked into the church, Sister Simpson was right there.  It was so great to see her!  She thought it was so great that we had planned our arrival so well, but then after we told her we all came together, she got all teary (okay she already was) but you know, anyway, she said how amazing the eternal bond of a mission is.  And it is so true!  Something else she said during her talk was how the Lord teaches us line upon line--however much we want to learn, he will help us!  The Lord knows no limits!  We must educate our desires and act accordingly.  When President began to speak, my heart was so happy!  I remember being so anxious for zone conferences because I felt so spiritually full after hearing his counsel and wisdom.  I still remember so many specifics of those talks.  The lesson I really walked away with on Sunday was this--two questions he posed:
1.  Will you just trust Jesus?
2.  Will you just submit your will to his now and do whatever is necessary?

Both the questions struck me to the core. First of all, I was reminded of the conversation I had just been having with a good friend earlier in the week.  Plus I have recently been pondering such things as I have been studying a talk by Elder Neal A. Maxwell, "Swallowed Up in the Will of the Father."  It is a really great talk I was given at institute one evening, definitely a recommended read.

The other thing President reminded us of, which was a reminder I needed was this: "You don't have to be perfect, you only have to be worthy."  I am so grateful for the opportunity of a mission, for the opportunity to have come to know so many great and wonderful people and for the opportunity to know how much Heavenly Father loves all his children.
The Simpsons and Sisters!

Thank you to these girls for a great time and great memories!
Thank you to the Simpson's for their ever great example, love, and kindness!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

I delight in loving my little life.

this is the quilt i'll be making (although i'll be doing a different version but essentially the squares are the same).
work:  Today, I was a commuter in the Salt Lake Valley.  Oi!  Going to the Sandy Clinic was such a great experience!  I'm so grateful for the opportunity to observe so many awesome clinician's during my "training" period.  There are so many things I am excited to incorporate into my own practice as an SLP.

learning:  Today also marked me doing the URLEND+AE program "official."  I'm really excited, a little nervous to embark on this 2 year post-grad fellowship but it will be so good.  Its amazing all the people I've just happened to meet to make this happen, and who will help to make it a success!

family:  Tonight the parents went out on a date, aw.  So it was me and C and C for the evening.  LB wanted to 'finish her own stuff' (aka making necklaces, because she is the most thoughtful kind soul ever), Craig was watching wagon train, and I was...doing nothing (my brain is reaching its capacity, i swear).  Well, then I hear someone go outside and soon,  there was Christin with Ruby all leashed up, knocking on my window, ready for a walk.  So off the three of us go...Christin in one hand, Ruby in the other.  I'm sure we were quite the sight, and we got some great looks (story of my life).   And I just relished in every moment.  For so long I thought living at home was so bad, but it is so good!  I get to come home to this!  And so, tonight as we walked, I really felt like it was one of those 'perfect moments' to be filed away into the permanent happy thoughts file in my brain.  (And Ruby is the best dog ever!  Story of the dog not on a leash, dog comes running up, Ruby of course, got her mohawk, but as soon as I said, "Rubes" she twirled in a circle, and came and sat at my foot, still attentive on the runaway dog, but sitting and being obedient.  High praise for the pup!)

talent development: i may have signed up for a quilt square group.  yes that means that starting next month, every second saturday i will be at sew and save, taking in my made up square and getting the pieces for a new square to have done by the next second saturday.  thankfully i have the best mom and neighbor to teach me the tricks.

gospel studies:  i've been stuck on the same chapter and verse all week. I start the chapter over again, only to end up at the same place, pondering and pondering and pondering.

 "I will give away all my sins to know thee..." (Book of Mormon, Alma)

right?  It just makes me think, reflect, and ponder change and repentance.  Intentional change.  Intentional repentance.

mission: President 2 got home earlier this month.  Roadtrip this weekend to his homecoming with fellow sisters.  I'm super excited about it!  As I talked to one of my companions the other night, I couldn't help but think about how I am so grateful for the experience of a mission for a million different reasons.

Monday, July 16, 2012

I delight in trying.

***This is not our puppy, but we wish it were***

Yesterday I had the wonderful opportunity to teach Relief Society. I am grateful for the opportunity we have in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to teach fellow members of our congregation, to speak, to articulate our feelings, experiences, emotions and testimony.  

I'm always fairly certain I get more out of the experience than others, so I guess my love of teaching is partially selfish; however, I think mostly I appreciate the opportunity to learn something with others.  And so, as I taught on "How to Share the Gospel Effectively" I did a lot of thinking about how well I am sharing the gospel these days (insert guilt here). How disappointed Sister McQuivey would be/is in Post-Mission Sister McQuivey.  

But I'm grateful I can try again.  I realized that through some course corrections I could get back on track and it was so hopeful to me!  I'm so grateful that life is so full of hope, hope for the future, hope for the past, hope for the good things made possible through Christ.  

In other news, and on a similar subject, I'm so grateful that I can try to not be so shy.  I've really been having to work on this hard lately!  I've always said I am an extrovert masquerading as an introvert. This is particularly relevant when I'm in a new setting or around people I don't know very well (insert new work experience).  It takes me some time to break out of my shell and I'm trying to get there as fast as possible.  Over time I've learned to embrace this as just a part of who I am, but it doesn't mean that it isn't frustrating sometimes.  And so, here's to bravery, to being a little louder, being a little less serious. 

And while I'm not on the subject, but the pictures on the top are...isn't that puppy SO cute?  It's our awesome neighbor's dog and we love love love her.  Oh how my family could have a puppy all the time if Mom could stand it, and if we didn't have so many things they destroy in our back yard.  :)

Monday, July 9, 2012

I delight in the busy crazy.

Life is so much better when I'm busy.  When I finished school, I was suddenly un-busy and had to find ways to be busy (hello crafts!) but alas, with the start of work and the onset of various activities/events/ has again become busy with a capitol B.  But...I love it and now have a new appreciation for it.  (enter "lessons of grad school"--that's a good list I'll have to share one day).

So to recap the highlights of my delights as of late:
1. I have been spending a lot more time outside to make up for all the time I spend inside and mostly away from windows.  Fishing, kayaking and even four-wheeling have been some of those outdoorsy activities and I can't believe how much I have missed them over the past two years.  Oh life.  Oh sun.  Oh Christin singing while we fish--see video below.  :)  There is just something about being in the middle of a lake by your own power (rowing!) that is so empowering and perspective lending.  It is a beautiful blessing and an all around peaceful experience.

2. Speaking of LB, whose name is really Christin (my sister) but whom I call LB, I really delight in her use of the word "mostest."  I also delight that she refers to the family dog Ruby as an 'angel puppy' even though Ruby is constantly jumping on her and running away with someone's shoe.  Usually mine.  I also really delight that at the end of a long day, I can come home to someone who will just give me hugs because that's usually what I just need at the end of everyday.

3. I really delighted in Sunday for a myriad of reasons.  Mostly because awesome Sister Anderson aka Katie came up for a visit.  We were in the same district in the MTC but she and another Elder went to Australia while the rest of us went to Canada.  Meeting back up for church on Sunday though was just like we'd been friends forever and I loved it!  I reminisce about my days as a missionary and it was SO nice to have someone to do it with who could really appreciate it.  And it just so happened that both the Sunday School and Relief Society lessons were about missionary work.  Coincidence?  NEVER!  Oh happies!  Better yet though, Katie and I read through the quotes I had written down from the MTC and we laughed till we almost cried.  The BEST!

4. I have been delighting in my job.  I'm still in the "I'm new/training stages" of my job, I still love it.  I'll just love it more when I get to finally BE an SLP and not have to learn lots and lots of billing/insurance/documentation/safety and fire regulations.  It currently hurts my head, and makes me SO grateful for the awesome office staff secretaries--they make it all happen and know SO much!

5. I delight in the unexpected.  You just never know what is going to come next and I'm slowly learning to embrace that fact (don't fight it, invite it!).  A friend asked me last week how I was dealing with my life changes, particularly a few I had been a bit (or a lot) pessimistic about.  I told her I was trying to have a change of heart by changing my attitude.  President J (my first mission president) always said "Attitude is Everything."  And you know what, he was completely right.  Attitude really is everything.  It is like an infection because it affects everything you do, everything you think and everything you are.  Since we can rarely change our circumstances to be just the way we'd like (or in other words, our idea of perfect), we can find another way to make it changing our attitude.  Mind you...I'm still working on this (thank heavens life is a work in progress because I by no means have it all figured out) but I think realizing it, is a step in the right direction.  I'm hoping at least.

6.  Finally, I'm really delighting in and grateful for hope.  Hope of a new tomorrow.  Hope of future change.  Hope through the knowledge of the Plan of Salvation which truly is THE Plan of Happiness.  Hope in the promises the Lord makes to his children.  Hope in the ability to act and not just be acted upon.  Hope in perspective.  Hope in Christ.

This is a little video from LB and I to you.  Made in the middle of the lake.  

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

america, you are beautiful

america the beautiful
O beautiful for spacious skies, 
For amber waves of grain, 
For purple mountain majesties 
Above the fruited plain! 
America! America! 
God shed his grace on thee 
And crown thy good with brotherhood 
From sea to shining sea! 

O beautiful for pilgrim feet 
Whose stern impassioned stress
A thoroughfare of freedom beat 
Across the wilderness! 
America! America! 
God mend thine every flaw, 
Confirm thy soul in self-control, 
Thy liberty in law! 

O beautiful for heroes proved 
In liberating strife. 
Who more than self their country loved
And mercy more than life! 
America! America! 
May God thy gold refine 
Till all success be nobleness 
And every gain divine! 

O beautiful for patriot dream 
That sees beyond the years 
Thine alabaster cities gleam 
Undimmed by human tears! 
America! America! 
God shed his grace on thee 
And crown thy good with brotherhood 
From sea to shining sea! 

Monday, July 2, 2012

Today, I delighted in going to work.

That's right friends.
Real work.  With pay!  And benefits!
That's a first (the benefits I mean)!

I am the newest Speech Pathologist at Primary Children's!!!  Technically I work at their Bountiful and Ogden Outpatient Clinics. I am elated about the entire situation.

As I sat in orientation today, I couldn't help but think about how blessed I have been and about what a blessing this job is going to be.  I crave personal and professional progress and I really think this is the perfect fit for those desires and for my interests in the field I love so very much.

Here's to learning LOTS of new things!
And hopefully blessing LOTS of people's lives!