This blog is filled with all kinds of tips, handouts and ideas that can help to motivate and fulfill your calling as a Visiting Teacher, and more because it is filled with helpful ideas for Relief Society related topics. We hope you will visit often, and don't forget to check out my other blogs too at:

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Chrismas

This beautiful little video conveys the message that I thing everyone should have in their hearts not only for Christmas, but for the whole year through. Merry Christmas friends! Enjoy! Katie G.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

December 2011 Visiting Teaching Message

I have typed up the Dec. 2011 Visiting Teaching message on a festive looking page, and you can feel free to print it off for yourself and take it with you Visiting teaching if you like. (Click on image to enlarge, then save to a file on your computer. You can print from there.)

Here is the link to the LDS Visiting Teaching message for December of 2011:

I am rather late in posting the message and my thoughts on the message, but better late than never. What a wonderful and thought provoking lesson this months Visiting Teaching message provides us. The first quote that lead my thoughts was this:

"The Lord, His Church, families, and communities need the influence of righteous women. In fact, Elder M Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles taught that “every sister in this Church who has made covenants with the Lord has a divine mandate to help save souls, to lead the women of the world, to strengthen the homes of Zion, and to build the kingdom of God.”
Some sisters may wonder if they can accomplish such lofty aims. But as Eliza R. Snow (1804–87), second Relief Society general president, explained, “There is no sister so isolated, and her sphere so narrow but what she can do a great deal towards establishing the Kingdom of God upon the earth.” Sister Snow also taught that Relief Society was organized “for the accomplishment of every good and noble work.”

As I read this quote from the message, I began to internalize it, and my thoughts began to direct themselves to what I am or have been doing to: "help save souls, to lead the women of the world, to strengthen the homes of Zion, and to build the kingdom of God." I know what I am doing and what I have done as a sister in Zion, but I began to think about some women who don't know what their talents are, and feel they don't know how to contribute.

Many years ago, when my family lived in another state, there was an LDS sister who lived in my ward boundaries, and she was shy, reserved, and had a difficult time even speaking with others. She was had very little self esteem and was very uncomfortable in social situations avoiding people in general. She did her best to get through each day with her own family and staying home a lot, but when she needed to have a conversation with others, she would fidget and look around, and seemed very uncomfortable. There was an occasion that something tragic happened within her very own family, causing her family to become estranged from her neighbors and associates and even some ward members. This devastation took it's tole not only on her, but her own family.

At this time, her family began to counsel with their bishop and in his wisdom he realized that in serving others, and developing their talents, that could really bless this family. The bishop's wife encouraged this woman to take voice lessons and develop the natural abilities for singing that she had. In doing this, she was able to lose some of her shyness and social anxiety, as she was given opportunities to sing in church and even in some community programs.
I noticed a change in her confidence as she was using a talent that the Lord had given to her, of a beautiful voice, to share with others. Somehow, she was able to perform in front of crowds, without anxiety and fear. She sang with confidence and that built her confidence in herself.

This woman joined the ward choir, and stake choirs and even went out into the community and participated in Coral groups. What a blessing her natural talent for singing provided others, as well as helped with her self esteem.

This story is just one simple way of building up the kingdom through serving and sharing personal talents. Speaking of talents, my thoughts are also drawn to the Parable of the talents, found in Matthew 25:14-30. In this parable, the talents refers to pieces of money. For us, talents mean abilities that we have and can develop to bless and enrich the lives of others... "thus building the kingdom of God".

This parable goes something like this... A man was traveling into a far country and called his servants in and gave them some talent or money. One he gave 5 talents, another two and then another man, each according to their abilities. The man who received 5 talents, traded and made five other talents, and so did the one who had received two talents. They magnified their talents. But the one who had received only one, when and buried his talent in the ground.

Sometime later, the Man who had given his servants these talents, called his servants to reckon with them and find out what they had done with the money or talents he had given to them. Now, I love what is said next! This is found in verse 21, "His lord said unto hi, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: though hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter though into the joy of the lord".

Pretty much the same thing and response happened between the Lord and the second servant who was given 2 talents or monies but something very different happened and was said when he found out what the third servant had done with his talents. The lord asked him what he had done, and the man said in verse 25 "And I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth: lo there thou hast that is thine". This man was chastened and the one talent that he hid, was taken from him and given to the man who had ten.

This parable then goes on a bit more, but basically this to me talks about the talents that the Lord has given to us, we are expected to use them and multiply them and to serve and bless the lives of others. In turn our talents become a blessing to us, our wards & Church, our neighbors and in our families.

What a wonderful church we are blessed to be members of! We all can contribute and make a difference in the lives of others. I know that the Lord blesses us, especially in times of need, when we serve him. I can testify of that, and for me, I always want to have those blessings available for me and my family, and I plan on serving every single day of my life. I am happier when i am in the service of others and I know that service is the key to joy! The Lord does need the influence of righteous women and if we all develop our talents and use them in the service of our lord, how great shall be our joy!

Katie G.
P.S. At, there is a whole page dedicated to seriving in the Church. It can be found at this link:

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Friday, December 2, 2011

Christmas Devotionals

Yesterday (Dec. 1, 2011) in the Deseret News, Mormon times, page C4, I found something that I thought was really wonderful to do with families during the days that lead up to Christmas. The article says the the Eric D. Huntsman family has had Christmas devotionals for years, that include a Christmas Story, Scripture and a Christmas Carol. I loved this idea so much that I thought it was worthy of sharing with you so you can use it in your own families.

I contacted the Deseret News and they did not have this article on their online newspaper, so I had my computer genius son, take my clipping from the news paper and clean it up and make it into a clean and readable document.

The stories listed in this article could be changed to your own favorite stories, or others that you can find online, but the scriptures that were selected to go with the stories seem to fit well with the message in the stories that this article has selected. You may want to do the same thing and tailor the scriptures you find to the message in the story. If you do begin compiling your own Christmas Devotionals, keep them, and put them in a booklet, so that you have them each year. Add to them and when your children are grown, pass them down to them and they will have a marvelous collection of Devotionals, but also wonderful memories that they will enjoy reminissing on from their own childhood.

I also wanted to share with you a MARVELOUS sourse for Christmas Stories, and I don't use this term lightly. Project Gutenburg not only has a whole collection of original classic Christmas stories, but classic books of all kinds, that they have preserved and are free to read and enjoy for everyone. Their website is: When you arrive at that website, in the L column, click on "categories" then "bookshelf" then "Children's bookshelf" then go to "Christmas Bookshelf". (it is easier to just go to the link which is

Because my blog is all about Tips, handouts and ideas... I have some now to share with you....
Now you realize that by me sharing with you this website, I am giving away some of my secrets! This is where I find some of my most wonderful vintage photos that I use to create some fun things as they are in Public domain. BUT with that said... Scroll down and you will see the most wonderful Classic Childrens Christmas Books! One that you must go to is the illustrated "Night before Christmas: A Visit from St. Nicholas" by Clement Clarke Moore. The images are vintage and some of the most beautiful artwork that ever was printed, at least in my estimation.
Another of these Christmas books that I have read to my own children during the Christmas season, is now found on Project Gutenburg. It is L. Frank Baums "Life and Adventures of Santa Claus" and it is also translated into an audio version that you can listen to besides read. Another one that I have read is "Yes Virginia, There is a Santa Claus" also in book and audio forms.

I hope you will take advantage of these fun tips to not only make your family's days that lead up to Christmas more memorable, spiritual, and fun, but begin a wonderful family tradition of your own that will be carried on in the hearts of your children throughout their lifetime.

Katie G.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Christmas Card

I realize it is a bit early, but since I have already created it, and Christmas is just around the corner, I thought I would post this Christmas Message for you to enjoy.

My husband is the bishop of our ward and he asked me to come up with a special message to give to our ward members. So... this is the story of how I came up with this wonderful message. A week or so ago, I attended the funeral of my sister in law's mother. My sweet sister in law, Kami Christensen Smith, gave the most inspired and wonderful talk which was the final talk of the funeral. She felt inspired to mend some family rifts and hearts and found this wonderful message given in a Devotional of President Howard W. Hunter in 1994. As she spoke these words, I knew that this was what our own ward needed to hear. I leaned over to my brother who was attending the funeral with me, and asked if he picked up on where this wonderful quote came from. He said that he too loved this quote so much, he printed it up years ago, and he remembered exactly where it came from. He then said it was the 1994 First Presidency Devotional spoken by President Howard W. Hunter.

After the funeral, I went home and looked up this talk on, and sure enough, there it was. I read through the whole devotional and loved it and took snippets of the talk to create this Christmas message for our ward. The Bishop loved it too, as the very things that are included in this talk are how we all should be living our lives, every day. If we did, this world would be a Celestial place! This talk can be found at this link:

Feel free to use this printable, to give out to the Sisters you Visit teach, use in your Relief Society, your ward, or to whomever you feel would appreciate this great message.

I have had several emails recently asking me how to download my creations, because I don't use the traditional downloading software. Just open up the image on my blog that you want to use, right click, save as (to whatever file on your computer that you will remember it saved in). Simple as that. Then to print, you open up the image on your own computer and print. The only thing that I ask is that you don't take credit for my work, though you can give it out freely otherwise. If people ask where they could find what you have printed from my blog, please tell them so that they can enjoy and use what I post.

Enjoy! Katie G.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

November 2011 Visiting Teaching Message

I love the months that we get to pick our own message to take to our sisters that we Visit Teach. It is always a difficult thing for me because there are so many wonderful conference talks that were given. I have decided to not share with you what I have selected for my message this month, because I believe that it is in the rereading of the talks that our inspiration comes. My inspiration might not be yours, and selecting the talk that is most applicable for your own sisters, will get your nose back into the Ensign and you too will be uplifted by reading.

Instead, I have a thought about this wonderful time of year for you. I have such an attitude of Gratitude to my Heavenly Father for so many things. A couple of weeks ago, my husband and I traveled to Iowa to the funeral of his brother. I have never attended a non-LDS funeral before or even a non-LDS church meeting, and it was an eye opening experience that strengthened my own personal testimony of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Don't get me wrong... the things that were said and done by the "Father" and other ministers was nice and comforting to the family, but there was something that I noticed that was missing. It was the Spirit. Everything that was said and done was scripted, and I felt as if I were witnessing a sort of musical play. Lots and lots of lovely music, but even though it was lovely and the words were nice, it seemed empty. I felt no spirit. Many different prayers were read, and once again, I felt nothing. The thought about what our church teaches with regard to "vein repetition in our prayers" came to mind.

The following Sunday, after we returned from our trip, as I sat in Sacrament meeting, I realized that the only prayers that we had scripted were the Sacrament prayers. We sang "Because I have been given much" and "I believe in Christ", and my eyes teared up and my spirit testified of the truths of the gospel. Such a huge difference I felt in my LDS Ward Sacrament meeting.

Another very interesting difference I noticed was that almost everything the ministers said, was scripted and read. In the wake, which in our LDS funerals, is essentially the viewing and opportunity to share condolences and thoughts about the deceased to the family, the minister who conducted also read from a script. She then turned the meeting over to those who were in attendance to share memories of the deceased. Friends and family who were all of that faith, shared their comments and then my husband felt inspired to stand and share his own memories of his brother. He stood, dressed in a suit and white shirt and tie, and shared some stories and then he shared the knowledge that we have of life after death. I looked around and noticed that many of these people were nodding their heads as he spoke with the Spirit of the Lord with him. He testified that his brother's spirit was perfect, and that he felt no more pain or hurt from the cancer that took his life. He shared that he was with his loved ones who had preceded him and what a glorious reunion that was being held there. I felt the Holy spirit in his words, that were not prepared, scripted but spoken from his heart.

After he sat down, a young man arose and commented on the words that my husband spoke. Others did the same. After the wake was concluded one woman came up to my husband and told him that she felt something special when he spoke, and knew that what he said was true. Of course we knew what she had felt was the spirit testifying to her heart.

What a wonderful blessing it is to be a part of a religion that is lead by mortal men, who are called of God to act in his name, who hold the Priesthood, and who serve the Lord, but do not even get paid for their service. This was another thing that I noticed as I spoke with many relatives and friends of the family. One woman said that her service in the church was to cook food for funerals, and that she gets paid to do it. To me, getting paid would take out all the blessings and fun of doing this kind of service.

LDS are different, but in marvelous ways. Service is something that we do and never receive compensation for it. We pay our tithing, fast offerings and other offerings voluntarily. That money is spent helping others who are in need, and not just in our own communities but all over the world. What a blessing it is to serve and give and share.

I am so thankful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ, for the Prophet who receives revelation from the Lord and who directs the affairs of our church. I love so much the talks given in Conference and the inspired words that touch my heart and fill my spirit with the nourishment I need in my life. I can't wait to go Visiting teaching and share one of these talks with the sweet ladies that I am so blessed to be friends with. I hope that you too can feel the same sweet feeling of friendship and love for those you teach. May the Lord bless you as you serve in this wonderful church. Enjoy! Katie G.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Visiting Teaching Fun!

We sure had fun on our field trip. If you don't know what I am talking about, then read the post below and it will enlighten you. Anyway that was such a fun idea and the ladies really enjoyed it.
We ended up going all to all 3 stores plus another one as it looked so interesting too. It was my birthday, and I want to let you know that sharing your birthday with others, who don't even know it is your birthday is the best. I eventually told them, but I love Visiting teaching so much, I knew that it would be a "Day maker" if I did it on my special day. I can truly say that spending some time with the sisters that I have grown to love and feel true friendship and adoration with, makes anytime, a special time. I hope that all of you can have the opportunity, oops, I mean... can MAKE the opportunity to feel the friendship with the sisters that you visit teach.

Anyway, I thought some of you would like a report on how this Visiting Teaching field trip turned out. Now... go out and get yours done... there is only a few days left in this month and your sisters need to hear from you.

Enjoy! Katie G.

P.S. I hope the stores that I borrowed the pictures of don't mind this free advertisement of their stores, because we sure had fun and maybe my site visitors might want to know about these stores and visit them too. Lehi Mill products are the best! I guess I am a bit prejudice because Lehi Mill is My Robinson Family business for over 100 years, but it really is a great place. The little store at Lehi mill is tiny and cute, but first class service.... you see your purchases are even carried out to your car for you, which is such a nice touch, especially when you buy food storage, flour and cases of their wonderful mixes. If you haven't been there, you should go and be sure to try the samples that they always have freshly baked for customers to try. It's a great place and I highly recommend it.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Visiting Teaching for October 2011

I came up with the funnest idea for Visiting teaching and I thought I would pass it on to you incase it would help you in your own Visiting Teaching. I am going to take my sisters on a Field Trip. Not just any old field trip, but a Visiting Teaching Field Trip!!! YEAH!!!!!

My sister are going to meet at my house, and we will all pile in the car. While we drive to the first location, my partner will be giving the message to the sisters, all at once. Then we will go to three different locations that none of us have ever visited. Let me tell you where we will be going...

I happen to live in Lehi, Utah, which I have never disclosed until now, so now you know. I was born and raised most of my life in American Fork, which is right next door to Lehi, and I hardly ever went to Lehi. I have lived her 4 years now and I still don't know my way around Lehi, and neighter do my sisters. So... here is our agend:

  1. Lehi Mill - which is the old Flour mill that was in the movie "Footloose". It just happens to be owned by my Robinson side of my family and my Uncle is now the owner, having be passed down from father to son for several generations. The mill has a darling little store and inside some very authentic and original decor.

  2. Broadbents - Once again, I have never been in this store unless my mother took me in as a child, but I certainly don't remember. It is a General Store as I understand it with quilting things and all kinds of other fun things... that a general store has.

  3. Scrooge and Marley's - A favorite of mine, with all kinds or cute handmade crafts all throughout the store. The store was made from an old home, and they even h ave a barn in the back that has more fun stuff. Very cute decorating things and nothing is outdated, just very cute.

  4. Nook and Cranny - If we have not shot the whole 2 hours of our field trip going to these places, we will then visit this store which is a vintage, sort of a junk store for the biggest part, but definately a step back in time. I have visited it many times looking for the vintage things that I collect, and have not fount them there, but certainly alot more things to look at. I have found so many of the old blue corelle, and platters, and things that I was given for my wedding. I even found these crazy old glass grapes that the Relief Society use to make at Homemaking years ago. My mom made some that the grapes were a rust colored, marbelish glass. You know what I am talking about.

SO doesn't this sound fun??? You should do it with your ladies. This isn't to spend money but it is to spend time together. I think we will all know Lehi, Utah alittle better when we are done, and we will have had laughs and lots of fun being together, and seeing cute things. Let's not forget the message either... all sister, including our inactive sister is coming and she will hear the message that we give. Captive audience in the car!! I can't wait!

Love, Katie G.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

This week I was able to join in on helping teach the lesson in R.S. this past week. I have copied it in the event that you are behind and are in need of a good lesson.

Lesson: Temple Work and Family History, Chapter 40
Teacher Sister Joanne Thomas

Sister Thomas said it was wonderful to have listened to Conference last weekend. It seemed to be filled with messages of encouragement and inspiration. She hoped this lesson would have that same message for everyone.

One of the most tender, inspirational comments in this lesson is simply this: “Heavenly Father wants all of His children to return and live with Him.” What parent does not feel the same way—we don’t just want 2 or our 3, or 3 of our 5 children to be with us as an eternal family, we want every one of our children. The quote goes on… “For those who died without baptism or the temple ordinances, He has provided a way for this to happen. He has asked us to perform ordinances for our ancestors in the temples.”

From our new book “Daughters in My Kingdom” we learn how important this concept was to the early saints: “Church members in Nauvoo found great comfort in baptisms for the dead and the promise of eternal families. One of these members was a sister named Sally Randall. When her 14-year old son George died, she sent the sad news to family members. Soon thereafter, she learned about baptism for the dead. Again she wrote to her relatives, this time with newfound peace and assurance: ‘George’s father has been baptized for him and what a glorious thing it is that we believe and receive the fullness of the gospel as it is preached now and can be baptized for all our dead friends and save them as far back as we can get any knowledge of them. I want you to write me the given names of all of our connections that are dead as far back as grandfather’s and grandmother’s at any rate. I intend to do what I can to save my friends…I expect you will think this is strange doctrine but you will find it to be true.” To her mother, who had also lost a child to death, Sally testified, ‘Oh, mother, if we are so happy as to have a part in the first resurrection, we shall have our children just as we laid them down in their graves.”

Baptism for the dead is one thing we do in temples. Our lesson reminds us of the great education we receive in the temple about where we came from, the meaning of earth life, and life after death. We gain a better understanding of our relationship with Heavenly Father and with His son, Jesus Christ. We go there to make covenants with Heavenly Father and perform sacred ordinances that can only be performed in temples by the power of the priesthood. We call this priesthood power “sealing”. What does that word mean to you?
Bind, bound. D & C 132:7

Elder Bednar in his Conference address shared the importance of the role of Elijah in the restoration of all things. Because Elijah held the sealing power of the Melchizedek Priesthood and was the last prophet to do so before the time of Jesus Christ, he was instrumental in restoring the fullness of the Melchizedek Priesthood, and all the ordinances belonging to the Kingdom of God. “This sacred sealing authority is essential for priesthood ordinances to be valid and binding both on earth and in heaven. The restoration of the sealing authority by Elijah in 1836 was necessary to prepare the world for the Savior’s second coming and initiated a greatly increased and worldwide interest in family history work.”

Our ancestors need our help so that they too can receive all the saving ordinances. Our manual says “Many of our ancestors are among those who died without hearing about the gospel while on the earth. They now live in the spirit world. There they are taught the gospel of Jesus Christ. Those who have accepted the gospel are waiting for the temple ordinances to be performed for them. As we perform these ordinances in the temple for our ancestors, we can share their joy.”

Basic step for doing Family History work are:
1. Identify our ancestors. Often we learn wonderful, inspiring stories and great appreciation for our ancestors.
2. Find out which ancestors need temple ordinances performed.
3. Make certain that ordinances are performed for them.

Sister Thomas asked Katie Gauger to share some of her recent experiences and the enthusiasm she has for this work:

Sister Gauger talked about some of the treasures that her mother had given her, including some very old vintage Whiting and Davis handbags. She told how precious they were because one belonged to her Grandmother and she didn't have any other thing of hers. She cherish it, but even though it is wonderful, lovely, rare, it isn't as precious as what she had inside the treasure chest that she showed to the class..

She used the scripture found in Luke 12:34 " For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also". Sister Gauger expressed that her heart is inside the treasure chest as she had been literally digging up her buried ancestors as she begun my hunt for them. She opened up the chest and began pulling out old photos and stories of her ancestors. She told how some of these ancestors came from the Willy and some from the Martin Handcart companies. Without these wonderful people making the sacrifice they did, and meeting and marrying, she would not be here today. She showed the video case of the movie "17 miracles", that just came out this year that is all about the Willey handcart company, and that one of the miracles it told about in the movie was about her ancestor, Elizabeth Cunningham, who was left for dead on the trek.

"At one time during the journey across the plains Elizabeth was left for dead, as she was thought to be frozen to death. The ground was frozen so hard that they could not dig a grave so they just wrapped her in a blanket and laid the body on the ground and hurried on to make camp for the night, as darkness was fast overtaking them. After they had made camp, the mother of Elizabeth felt impressed to go back to the child. Her friends ridiculed the idea, but the mother was determined, for she maintained that the child was not dead. She had been promised in Scotland that if she was faithful, that she and all her family would reach Zion in safety. She went back to the child and found her undisturbed by the wolves. She carried the child back to camp and worked over her. Some hot water was spilt on her foot accidently and it caused a quiver to go through the limb. Convinced that she was still alive, they kept up their efforts until they brought her back to life. Elizabeth lived to be the mother of thirteen children, and the foster-mother of three others."
She explained that many of these ancestors inside my treasure chest, have not had their temple work done for them. She showed one famous Pioneer ancestor whom she thought probably had all her work done, because she was so well known, but when Sister Gauger began checking into it, there was one ordinance that was missed. She found it and will be doing it very soon for her.
Sister Gauger bore testimony that our ancestors who are in the spirit world, are anxiously awaiting their turn to have their temple ordinances done for them, and many of them have been waiting for hundreds of years. She then told the story of a family of my ancestors ( 3 girls and 1 boy) who were sealed to the prophet Brigham Young back in the late 1800's, but had been waiting ever since for someone to find them and do the rest of their work for them. In her digging, she found them last year, and have been working on doing their work. She told the sister of my special experience of doing the initiatory work for one of them in the temple and how this sister's spirit permeated the room to the point that everyone was weeping. We all knew that she was there and had accepted the work I was doing for her.

Sister Gauger closed with bearing my testimony that during the millennium, there will be 3 major things that will be accomplished.

1. Missionary Work
2. Temple Work
3. Genealogy work and finding record of every person who has ever lived on this earth and preparing to take their names to the temple.

She urged the sisters to not delay in learning how to do Genealogy and Family history work. It is easier now than ever before. She gave a bunch of websites on her handout (See Attached file) that are great resources, besides the Family history centers in every city, and taking the Family history class that our ward offers.


So what can we do if “all the work is done” or “we have little time in our busy lives”?
1. Attend the temple
2. Do research
3. Help with the church indexing program.
4. Contribute Family History information.
5. Participate in family organizations
6. Told this Conference that we can contribute to the General Patron Assistance Fund
7. Elder Bednar told us in this Conference that the youth need to get involved in Family History work. He said that they have not learned technology just so they can text message. He said if they respond in faith they will be safeguarded and will be contributing to the salvation for the Human Family.

Speaking of our ancestors, Elder Bednar said “they without us cannot be made perfect—we cannot be made perfect without them.”
We have been taught that the Savior vicariously did for us what we could not do for ourselves. Mormon Doctrine tell us “Those of his brethren who perform, vicariously, for others—meaning for those who have died without a knowledge of the gospel—the saving ordinances which they cannot perform for themselves are called ‘saviors on Mount Zion.”

What a glorious opportunity, promise and blessing. And at the same time we save ourselves. As Pres. Monson said “As you & I go to the holy houses of God, as we remember the covenants we make within, we will be more able to bear every trial and to overcome each temptation. In this sacred sanctuary we will find peace, we will be renewed and fortified.”

In closing, Elder Bednar said "Family history is not simply an interesting program or activity sponsored by the Church; rather, it is a vital part of the work of salvation and exaltation.”

How We Begin Helping Our Ancestors
Latter-day Saints are encouraged to participate in family history activities. Through these activities we learn about our ancestors so that we can perform ordinances for them.
Family history involves three basic steps:
1. Identify our ancestors. To do our ancestors work, we must first know their names. We also need important dates and places such as birth, marriage and death date. We can find this information by asking parents and relatives, through family Bibles, obituaries, cemetery head stones, family histories, diaries and journals. Much of this information can be found on the internet, as well as at You can also visit family history centers and they are located in practically every city in Utah County. Go to to find their locations. All information we find should be recorded on pedigree charts and family group records.
2. Find out which ancestors need temple ordinances performed. You can log on to the internet and go to You will then be able to see if your ancestors work has been done already. If not, you can reserve those ancestors work, print off the ordinance sheets to take to the temple to have them print our the ordinance cards to begin their work.
3. Make certain that the temple ordinances are performed for them. We should prepare ourselves to receive a temple recommend so that we can do the work for our kindred dead. Children 12 years old and older can also get a temporary temple recommend that lets them go to the temple to do baptisms for the dead. If it is not possible to go to the temple, the temple will arrange to have the ordinances performed by other members of the church who attend the temple.
Our ward has a family history committee and consultants that can answer questions and direct us to the resources we need in our family history quest. Our ward provides a Family history class 4 times a year, to help you to learn the process of doing your own Family history research. You should request to be in this class and get your own family history started, or go further from what has already been done.
There are additional Family history opportunities that we can do to help our Ancestors:
1. Attend the temple as often as possible. After going for ourselves, we can then perform the saving ordinances for our ancestors who are anxiously waiting in the spirit world.
2. Do research to identify ancestors who are difficult to find. You can get the assistance of either ward family history consultants, or consultants at any of the family history centers.
3. Help with the Church’s indexing program. To find out more about this program go to
4. Contribute family history information to the Church’s current computer programs for family history. These allow people to share family history information from all over the world.
5. Participate in family organizations, have family reunions to share family history.
The following are some good websites to visit to help you in your search:
è LDS Church genealogy collection of records, resources and services to help people with their family history.
è Browse and search Family History Websites for Cencus, Legal records, regions and religious groups, and much, much more.
è Learning Resources - Research Wiki, Research courses, Getting Started with Family history step by step videos.
è Discover your family history by typing in the name of your ancestor, Place and year range. Advanced search options as well. Also find your family trees, catalog and Books in the BYU Family history Archive
è Family Search Centers and what’s available there.
è Free trial then paid subscription. Millions of online family history record source for historical records, photos, stories, family trees, photos, and more. It is very worth at least doing the free 14 day trial subscription.
è Youth and family history website and is a great resource for Youth as well as adults to help them get started doing family history work.
è PAF – Personal Ancestral File Version 5.2, Windows
è Cindi’s list is a free research center of links and resources on the internet.
è Dead Fred site is filled with tons of photos of people who are dead. Be sure to check out their “links” as they offer great internet resource.
è http://www.distant
è Legacy 7.5 is a genealogy software with a free limited version or you can pay for the full version. Will load your PAF files, or directly from familysearch records.
è Find the grave of your ancestor.

The Scriptures tell us why do we need to seek out our ancestors and do their temple work:
3 Nephi 25: 5-6 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord; And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.
Corinthians 15:1–29 (Jesus Christ died for our sins – He rose from the dead and was seen my many, proving that all mane will be resurrected. Paul speaks of baptism for the dead.)
D&C 128: 1-25 (Epistle form Joseph Smith to the LDS Church containing further directions on baptism for the dead. 1-5 Local and general recorders must certify to the fact of baptisms for the dead; 6-9 Their records are binding and recorded on earth and in heaven; 10 – 14, The baptismal font is a similitude of the grave; 15 – 17 Elijah restored power relative to baptism for the dead; 18 – 21 All of the keys, powers and authorities of past dispensations have been restored; 22-25, Glad and glorious tidings are acclaimed for the living and the dead.)
John 5:24, 25 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that hearth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. Verily, Verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God; and they that hear shall live. (Jesus promises to take the gospel to the dead – Man is resurrected, judged and assigned his glory by the Son)
Luke 12:34 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. What is your buried treasure, and how much is it worth to you and to your ancestors by digging it up? What do you think those who are preserved during the second coming of Christ, in the millennium, will be doing? Want to know? Go to the Gospel principles Manuel chapter 45 or online at this link:
Maybe it is time to learn how to do genealogy, and then like President Spencer W. Kimball said…
“Just do it!”

Monday, October 3, 2011

My General Conference Thoughts

Once again, I say after every single General Conference.... "This was the most marvelous General Conference ever!" I think that this one topped all the others. I told that to my husband once again, and he wisely said, "It's because you listened with the Spirit as they are all just as wonderful as the others." Oh it is so true, when you are tuned in with the Lords frequency, you get so much more out of everything! I have also included a few other old photos of the Provo Utah Tabernacle, in the olden days that I found on line. I love vintage photos... don't you?

Did you feel like we did when you heard the announcements from President Monson about the building of more new Temples? Both my husband and I began to cry... as that announcement touched our souls, especially the rebuilding of the Provo, Utah Tabernacle. What a marvelous thing to do to restore the past into a beautiful temple. I can't wait! I am going to do my best to get tickets to the open house, as this one really brings me excitement! I found this cute postcard and other vintage photos of the Old Tabernacle so you can see what it use to look like. You can find them at

I loved the personality of our Prophet. I head him say that he wants to Dedicate the Star Vally Wyoming temple... because there is good fishing there. Now how cute was that? President Monson and the entire first Presidency have such wonderful personalities and I am so grateful for the messages that they gave to us.

I look forward to getting my Ensign so that I can reread the messages of this conference. I do know which one already I plan on doing for my Visiting teaching message, but you will have to wait and see.

This morning I spent an hour out in my tiny garden picking raspberries. I think it may be my last picking before the weather freezes. I loved it and have plans for those berries in a pie for my sweet husband.

Have a terriffic week! Enjoy this beautiful fall and the colors of nature! Be happy and spread the love!

Love, Katie G.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

General Conference October 2011 Watch it live!

I am so excited for General Conference, coming up next week. I loved the Relief Society Broadcast that is for me the kick off of the upcoming conference. I think President Uchtdorf's talk was once again my favorite. He has such great talks, and in them are always wonderful quotes worth quoting. I think that there will be a huge surge in purchasing "Forget me nots", and I think that the five petals and five things he focused his talk on, will also be used by so many people. He is just a great Church leader who has such personality and genuine love for everyone, just like our wonderful Prophet and Pres. Eyring. We have such a marvelous first presidency, and I really look forward to hearing what

General Conference Archives: Within 24 hours after a conference session concludes, video and audio files will be available in 12 languages. The Thursday following General Conference, text of all talks will be posted in English at You can watch or listen to past conference addresses at the General Conference section of

Relief Society General Conference (Watch it live!)

Iam really excited that the R.S. Broadcast is streamed live from SLC and it appears that you can watch it from home. I am not feeling very well and have been debating on whether or not I should go to my Stake Center, and sit at the back so that I could see it. BUT... it looks like I can watch it from home on my computer. What a great thing, so I thought I would pass this on to you if you find yourself in my same boat, or have other circumstances preventing you from attending at your Stake Center. Enjoy!!!! I look forward to it. Katie G.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

September 2011 Visiting Teaching Message

Click on this post title to be magically taken to the September 2001 Visiting Teaching message.

Once again... another wonderful and inspired message our Church has given us to share with those we visit teach. Isn't it great that we can relate to our sisters on a spiritual level and actually have probing and insightful gospel centered conversations? I love it!

The topic for this months Visiting Teaching message is Strengthening Families by Increasing Spirituality.

  1. How can I help my sisters increase in spiritual self-reliance?

  2. How can I improve my own ability to recognize and respond to the Holy Spirit?

I am sure that most of you have had the opportunity to move from one home to the next, even if it is simply moving out of your parents home when you get married. I have had the opportunity to move 6 times during the course of my marriage, and each move has had one common denominator.... Family. We moved from house to house with and for our family. We knew that family would fill the home and it would be a sanctuary where they always knew that they would be loved and accepted.

As our children grew, and become more involved with learning skills, talents, sports, etc., it was even more important for our home to be a that sanctuary where they would come home to for rest, feeling safe and secure. We did our best to have regular family home evening, even through the grumbles... the "I'm tireds", and the occasional fights that happened between the children, we actively tried to our best! It was important to have a home cooked meal on the table and our children looked forward to coming home to be nourished and fed. We were a family who talked at the table and enjoyed our mealtime conversation.

Being nourished and fed physically is important to our mortal body but being fed spiritually is just as important, and in fact more important in the long run. Our children needed to know this truth and we did our best to read the scriptures, attend our meetings and let our children understand that going to Young Men and Young Women was important, and they needed to put that as a priority in their busy lives.

Sundays was the Lords day and our family dedicated that day to the Lord and we did our best to keep the Sabbath day holy with the activities that we did on Sundays. It was difficult when we lived outside of Utah, because our children were constantly being invited to birthday parties, trips to Lake Tahoe, and all other fun activities that they could do on weekdays. It was hard for them to tell their friends that we don't do these things on Sunday, but we as parents had set a standard and kept to it. Yes, there were grumbles, and yes, our kids at the time felt a little picked on, but serving the Lord and keeping Spiritual things in our minds and hearts was simply more important.

Whatever we do for our children when they are young will have a huge impact on who and what they become. We understand that the Lord gives each of us the agency to choose and some of our children will not choose to follow the way that they had been taught. This brings great sorrow to faithful parents, but as the hymn goes... "God will force no man to heaven. He'll call persuade, direct a right, and bless with wisdom love and light."

It is my personal feeling that if we as parents teach our children the ways of God, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and keep them in our prayers, and if we as parents keep those covenants we make in the temple, that one day our lost children will return. I know that God wants all his children to return to him one day, and has inspired the leaders of our church with missionary programs in wards, stakes, and all over the world, to find them and bring them back.

How important is it that we do keep ourselves open to the promptings of the Holy Spirit? My husband recently was called to be the bishop of our ward. After he was set apart, I saw some changes he made in his life, to be more open to the promptings that he would receive. The music he listened to changed. He stopped watching TV and focused more on reading the Ensign and studying the scriptures on his Ipad. Our home began to be a more spiritual place by just making a few changes. I love it, and I don't miss TV at all! I love the peace and calm that good music brings. This is what we should do for our families, and keep our home an atmosphere that draws the spirit, instead of detracting.

Well these are my thoughts about this lesson and if I come up with any more I will revisit this message. I hope you will think about this lesson and come up with things that you can present to your sisters that will help them strengthen their own families.

Happy Visiting Teaching! Katie G.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

August 2011 Visiting Teaching Message

You can find the message for this month, at or just click on the title of this post and you will magically be taken there. The message is titled, "A Society of Holy Women".

Sister Sylvia Alred was quoted when she said, "The work of Relief Society is holy, and doing holy work creates holiness in us." What a profoundly true statement. When we are about doing the Lords work, which is indeed holy, then we become holy. I can certainly testify to the truthfulness of this quote. As an example of this truth, about a month and a half ago, my husband and I were called into the Stake Presidents office, and after interviewing both of us, and asking us some pretty direct and probing questions, my husband was called to be the new bishop of our ward. He was sustained and set apart a few weeks later.

I have been married to him for over 35 years and when hands were laid on his head and the keys were given to him, and he began to serve our ward, I saw a different man. I was seeing him through the very same eyes as I always have, but his countenance changed as he was about giving tireless service to the members of our ward. He looks different to me and I feel such a marvelous spirit surrounding him, and like the quote said... "holy work creates holiness in us."

I testify that as we go about serving others, like Sister Alred said, We become holy. We may not necessarily be transformed and look different as the example I gave , but when we go about doing what the Lord asks of us, we are refined, and our thoughts and actions become holy.

As members of the LDS Church as well as sisters in the Relief Society, we are given plenty of opportunities to become holy as we receive callings and are given opportunities to serve others. Visiting Teaching is one of the greatest opportunities to provide service. Relief Society Presidents can't be everywhere and know everything, so she depends on the Visiting teachers to provide the watch care over the sisters of the ward. We become earthly ministering angels as we act upon the promptings we get on behalf of our sisters. To paraphrase sister Lucy Mack Smith, the Prophet's mother, "We cherish, watch over, and comfort one another".

There is so much more to what we as women in this church, are blessed with the opportunity to do. We serve our families, we serve in our various church callings. We look for needs and then provide service to fulfill those needs. We do our genealogy, and write our family history and go to the temple and do ordinance work for ourselves and our ancestors. This holy work gives us the opportunity to become Saviors on Mount Zion for those who have left this earth without the opportunity to receive these holy ordinances.

The Prophet Joseph Smith said: "Relief Society sister living their covenants command the respect not only of noble people, but "if you live up to your privileges," he promised the sisters, "The angels cannot be restrained from being your associates."

One of my favorite scriptures brought to mind is ..."When we are in the service of our fellowmen (and women) we are only in the service of our God." And one more..."If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things."

It is my prayer that we will seek for higher grounds as we serve others. Now with this said... go out and get your visiting teaching done for this month and enjoy and be happy! Katie G.

P.S. I really enjoyed reading all of the scriptures referred to in this lesson. I think you will to, so don't pass them by. One more thing... I have made a door hanger handout for you to print off, so that you can..."GIVE THEM A HAND" in whatever ways you can. For the printable go to

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Visiting Teaching Message for July 2011

Here is the link that will take you directy to the web page where you can find the July 2011 Visiting Teaching Message.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Strengthening families through temporal self reliance

Click on the Title and it will take you directly to where you can read the June 2011 Visiting teaching message about Strengthening families through temporal self reliance.  I have added my thoughts about the lesson in the post just below.  Go out and do your Visiting teaching.  Katie G.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Strengthening families through temporal self reliance

This is a great lesson for everyone.  Self Reliance!!!!  You know the glory of God is intelligence, and we know that whatever principle of intelligence we gain in this life, will rise with us in the Resurrection!  Well, when we become self reliant, we are constantly developing  all those skills that help us improve ourselves.  This is exactly what we are to do and what the Lord wants for us in our lives on this earth. 

I think we can all step back somewhat and look our grandparents because in their generation, they were self reliant.  Look at the example of the pioneers.... they couldn't just drop in a store and buy whatever they needed for food, they had to plant, nurture and grow it to sustain their families, not only for their food source, but to provide income to live. 

This year has been a particularly crazy weather year, with way too much snow and water, and we are seeing the results.  Lots and lots of flooding.  I was just barely able to plant my own little garden, but I have read about farmers who do this for a living have had to really delay their planting because of the rain and snow and floods.  What would happen to us, if we couldn't just drop in at the grocery store and purchase our food?  What if the farmers couldn't plant their crops this year at all, what would happen to us?  We take for so much for granted and we should take a leaf out of the books of our ancestors and learn how to do things for ourselves, in case we have to!

I have to share a story of my own mother.  My Mom and Dad raised 8 children on a very limited income.  Dad was a milkman and later a janitor.  Mom taught violin lessons.  Together there was barely enough money to pay the bills, and feed the family, but somehow they did it. Mom cooked from scratch, and made homemade bread, pancakes, and other wonderful things. Mom made sure that every year she would plant a garden, and that garden became a winter source of food for our family. Dad built the food storage shelves, and Mom filled them.  Her industry was taught to her children, and all of us learned how to bottle and freeze fruit, and vegetables.  My favorite was the grapes that she juiced and we enjoyed this fresh grape  juice every Thanksgiving.

It was a blessing that she was industrious enough to plant, and water by hand the garden that produced so much. Yes, I said by hand, she had no sprinkling system but herself.  After all her children married or moved away, and my father died, Mom still continued to plant her garden.  That large home became too overwhelming to take care of so she moved to a smaller little cottage, and at her new home, she still plants her garden every summer. She really has no garden space to speak of but uses spots between the bushes in her driveway, and plants pots with lettuce, spinach, Swiss chard, and tomatoes. My husband loves rhubarb, and she always brings over a rhubarb cobbler for him to enjoy from her garden.  Mom is a wonderful example of self reliance.  It is interesting too, that she always has enough for herself and also to give to others.  Mom still drags the hose to water her plants, but they are growing and will produce some fresh vegetables.

My daughters ask me every year to get together to do canning of spaghetti sauce, and salsa, peaches, and other items.  Because I was taught by my mother, I have been able to teach my daughters as well this wonderful homemaking skill.  It is lots of fun to spend entire days canning together with my daughters. Our scene in my kitchen reminds me of the memories I have canning in mom's kitchen.

Grammy Great top Right, my mother bottom Left.

My Grammy Great, whom I have written about in my blog posts, was also a wonderful example of self reliance.  She bore 13 children, 2 of which died in infancy, as did her husband when she was pregnant with her last child.  She even took in another boy to raise.  Grammy Great had to be self reliant.  She saved every scrap of fabric and made beautiful rag rugs that she sold for money to provide for her family.  Her children helped too, as they stitched the long ropes of fabric together.  There was never idle time, as Grammy Great used her precious time prudently.  She picked the fruit off of the trees on her yard, and bottled them and all winter long, there was delicious peaches, apples to make her special "Thing in the oven" recipe, and beans, and all manner of vegetables and fruits.   I can't think of anyone who would have been as needy as my Grammy Greats family, but it was Grammy Great who was first to take food to those in need, and help in anyway she could even outside of her own family. None of her children really ever knew just how needy they were, because she was so grateful for everything and the Lord provided, and gave her the skills, strength and industry to accomplish all she needed to do.   This is self reliance, and charity!

The Visiting Teaching  lesson teaches ..."When the Saints arrived in the Salt Lake Valley, President Brigham Young (1801–77) counseled sisters to assist those in need and to learn skills that would allow them to take care of themselves. He said, “Learn to sustain yourselves; lay up grain and flour, and save it against a day of scarcity.” 3 Under the direction of the priesthood, Relief Society continues to teach self-reliance, to safeguard the family, and to encourage personal righteousness and acts of charity, the pure love of Christ." 

May we become more self reliant, may we broaden our mind and skills to learn and become self reliant, and may we reach out to help others do the same, though acts of charity and kindness.  May we all have the pure love of Christ in our lives, as we strengthen our families and others,through becoming self reliant!

Katie G.

Friday, May 13, 2011

It's the caring that counts

My ward is implementing a wonderful Visiting Teaching idea that our President took from the message that Sister Beck gave to all of those R.S. Presidencies who attended R.S. General Auxiliary Training.  It is very inspired.  I have posted it on my other blog
Enjoy!  Katie G

May 2011 Visiting Teaching message

Don't you just love when the month after conference comes, and you get to pick your own message from the wonderful talks that were given at  conference?  I know that I do.  It is a motivational thing, because it is actually rereading all of them and trying to pick just one topic and message.  I think there is more of a purpose here than what meets the eye.  What I just said... rereading all of the talks, is probably what it is all about.  Here is the link to listen to the Conference talks again...

Don't you just love this church?  It is all about repetition and going over and over the principles of the gospel, rereading the scriptures, Ensigns, and even going to church over and over each and every week.  Purpose to this madness.... YES!  It is all good for us and helps to keep us on the straight and narrow.

I have a little personal experience that I want to share about a calling I once had.  I was called in a past ward, many years ago to a calling that I had felt very much inept in taking.  I said "YES" only because I was taught to not say now.  I was called to be the ward choir director.  I have played the violin for years, and piano and have sung in choirs, and participated in many musical productions, but never had I lead the music outside of Sacrament meeting, Primary and Relief Society, and certainly not a ward choir.  This calling gave me great anxiety because the previous choir directors were professionals, and I literally mean that as one of them was actually a Music teacher, and chorus director as his vocation. 

I did alot of praying and studying for hours the music that I would present to the choir to prepare to sing.  I had been told that we have so many individuals who come and sing, yet they don't know how to read music.  I decided that I would give it my best shot and hope it all worked out.

I began to direct the practices, and I literally sweat blood as I studied the music so that I could teach those who didn't read music their parts, including the men's parts as I had never sung Tenor or bass before.  In the practices, I noticed that the key to learning the music was to go over and over it.  So I did. One Day, I noticed some of the women in the ward talking among each other when I was working with the men.  It was obvious that they were talking about me as they kept looking up at me and then whispering and then looking again.  Finally the practice ended and I went home to take care of my family and be wtih them as it was Sunday.

Shortly after that my doorbell rang and in walked one of the sisters from the ward choir.  She was on a mission and she said that she represented many of the sisters in the Choir.  She told me that I was repeating the music too much and by doing so, I was treating the members of the choir like babies, not grown adults.  This took me back.  As she was telling me this, images of working with the men who didn't get their parts until I went over and over the music with them, went through my mind.  My eyes began to well up, and I was ready to burst out crying.  I was definitely hurt, and felt very unappreciated.  Little did she or those other women know, just how many hours a week I spent toiling over that music, just to get it prepared to teach them.  My confidence was shot and shortly after, I asked to be released.  The choir didn't have a director for several years after that. 

Now my point was not to tell you this story for your sympathy, but rather to teach a lesson.  Repetition is how all of us learn.  Without going over and over things, unless of course we have a photographic memory, is the only way to learn, internalize and make progress with anything in life.  For some it is more difficult than others.  Do you remember how long it took to study for tests in your High school classes... then on to college?  I don't know about you, but I had to study my brains out for my grades, and then sometimes I simply didn't study and repeat things enough and I didn't do so well. 

Repetition is something that we all must do  in our lives, and with that said.... remember "the glory of God is intelligence.  We all need constant learning in order to progress.  I don't know how many times our prophets have advised us to read and reread our scriptures.  Each time I do, it is almost like the first time I read them because I find things in them that I had forgotten or didn't get out of them in prior readings.  This is my message to you.... go through the Ensign and reread the conference talks, and do this over and over. I guarantee to you that different things will p op out at you each time you read them.  Share your incites with your sisters, and don't worry if you think that they have already read or heard it because everyone also absorbs messages with different perspectives.  Your perspective may be just what your sisters are in need of to help them to deal with their challenges and issues of this life. 

Happy Visiting teaching!  Go out and get it done!  Katie G

Monday, April 18, 2011

April 2011 Visiting teaching message

I have placed the link to the Visiting Teaching message for this month on the Title, so it will magically take you there, when you click on it.  I have been quite a slacker in getting something done for my sisters that I teach.  I am doing something fun this month, and we are doing a friendship outing.  Over lunch we will discuss the Visiting Teaching message, and I will give them the handout that I created in the 11th hour.... actually I just finished it.  I love it, and of course it is in keeping with the message that is at 

If you have not been to my other blog (s) lately, you should because I have some really cute Easter things that I found that would be fun with for gift giving for Easter.  I am actually going to use the cute carrot box template and fill them up with Jelly beans as my table favor for my family's Easter dinner.  There are many other cute ones so "hop, hop, hop" on over to  and know that some "bunny" cares about you to keep this blog going. 

"HOPPY" EASTER!!!!  Enjoy!  Katie G.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Katie G. update

Surgery went well and I am recoverying nicely.  Thanks to those who have offered me your kind words and prayers.  It all helps!  Best regards, Katie

Thursday, March 10, 2011

My Time out

I am going in for surgery tomorrow and probably won't be back to posting anything for a couple of weeks.  Please don't give up on me and come back for a visit, as I am sure that my recuperating time will spir on pleanty of fresh and new ideas, as I will have lots time to do nothing but think.

Love to all of you... and by the way... go out and get your visiting teaching done early.  With General Conference coming up, Spring breaks, and Easter, it all happens so quickly and we tend to forget about our Visiting Teaching until it is the next month. 

Much Love,
Katie G.

Monday, March 7, 2011

March 2011 Visiting Teaching Message

The Message for March is titled "Under the Priesthood and after the Pattern of the Priesthood". 
You can find tis months message at this link...,4945,2044-1-5250-1,00.html

Friday, March 4, 2011

"A grateful heart" lesson

I am teaching on Sunday and my theme is "A Grateful heart". (Young Women)  It is going to be a great lesson taken from several of the General Authorities and our Prophet's Conference talks.  It has been such a gratifying experience preparing this lesson because of the nature of the message.  Having a Grateful heart and living in Thanksgiving daily.  If you want to go to my YW Blog and see the flyer or the lesson (once it is finished tomorrow) click on the title of this post and it will take you directly there.  Enjoy!  Katie G.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

God has a plan for me

My Daughter who lives in Park City is doing a sharing time tomorrow in Primary and wanted a cuter bookmark than she had found elsewhere on the web, to hand out to the children.  The theme is God has a plan for me.  I realize that this is for Primary and my blog is for Relief Society and Visiting Teaching, but since I made it up and like to share all of my creations... then here is the bookmark for you to download and print off for your own use.  You never know when you could fit this bookmark into a Visiting Teaching lesson.  Enjoy!  Katie G. 

Friday, February 18, 2011

After 40 our Brain Cells must have all dried up!

I am laughing my head off as I returned home from what I thought was my Visiting Teaching visits.  My partner and I had appointments this morning and arrived at our first appointment and proceeded to the front door.  We rang the doorbell, and waited.  We rang it again and waited.  Then we decided that if they were in the basement, that she might not be hearing the doorbell, so we should knock.  After a very loud knock, and still no answer, we decided to go to our car and give her a call on my cell phone. 

She answered after only a couple rings, and she was oh so apologetic.  Says she totally forgot, and that she and her husband were on their way out of town.  I began to laugh, and I could only think of one things to say..."Thank you", you make me feel so much better.  That may sound like a bit of a strange reply, but in actuality, it was one that made me feel like I am not the only one who forgets things.  I have determined after about age 40+ our brain cells must be all dried up.  I have become so forgetful, even when there are post it notes, pasted all over my house... I still forget.  So here is my confession... When I was assigned to Visit teach this very woman who just forgot about our visit today, I forgot the very first appointment to visit her some months ago.  I was so humiliated that I forgot, as she had not lived in the ward for very long, and I was really looking forward to getting to know her better. But I forgot. Guess what... I almost forgot the second appointment.  Gee willikers... I can be pretty dense at times!!! Now can you see why I told her Thank-you?  I was so glad to be in the company of others who forget things too, and it makes me feel alittle more normal, even minus the brain cells.

So my story isn't over.....  We wait for the 45 minutes until the time to go to our next appointment, and my partner and I just waited at my home and chated for the interim.  Finally it was time to go, and as we pull up to the 2nd sisters house, her garage doors were open, and she was sitting in her car, ready to back out of the garage.  Her rear brake lights went on once she spotted us and she stopped.    She turned off her car, and came out the door toward us, and I simply couldn't  hold back the laughter. To totally busted up and said, "Looks like you forgot we were coming."  She said that she had programed in her telephone a reminder of our Visit for today, and had even set the alarm to remind her as well.  The alarm didn't go off, and she was on her way."  We all laughed together, and I said, "Well I don't remind myself with an alarm, but I have post it notes pasted on my bathroom mirror, my computer screen, my refrigerator, my purse, and still I forget things.  I told her how grateful I was that I wasn't the lone ranger and the only one whose brain cells were drying up!  We laughed again. 

Obviously we didn't get any of our intended visits in, but we did get to have a light moment of laughter and forgetfulness!  Sometimes we just need to let things roll off of us, and enjoy the moment and this happened to be one of them.  Now.... when will I be able to find the time to go back and visit these sisters again this month?  Who knows, and I must add that I had already visited them briefly delivering a Valentine Surprise on Valentine Day.  That's ok, and I am just grateful that we can all humor and appreciate each other, in spite of the lack of brain cells.

Now I thought I would tell you my brain cells theory.  Obviously it isn't in any medical journals, or spoken by anyone who is an authority on the subject, but because I must be the queen of lost brain cells, I have theorized what happens after about 40+.  (by the way... this is suppose to make you laugh)  I have done my homework, and evidently the general consensus is that a woman's brain weights about 2.8 lbs, and to make you feel even smarter, Albert Einsteins brain only weighed  2.71 lbs.  Anyway the average guess from the different websites that I did my research on that the human brain contains about 100 billion cells on average. We lose about 10,000 brain cells a day after adolescence,  through a variety of different ways.  Some of the ways are listed here:  Now women also lost a few more brain cells giving birth, so as I figure, I have had 5 children, and so I have that many less brain cells.  Right?   Stress can really cost us brain cells too, and women are the worlds best at being stressed, aren't we?  Gratefully for all of us, we have so many brain cells that when we lose a few, it doesn't matter... we just become a bit more scatter brained. 

Anyway, to sum all of this up, we are all the same, and we all have lost some brain cells or two thousand, but one thing is for certain, that no one is exempt.  We all need to just laugh about it, adjust ourselves, and let a whole lot more roll off of our shoulders.  We need to smile and laugh a lot more.  Everyone makes mistakes, and as I well know, some make more of their share of mistakes than others. (that would be me.) 

I did do some more research on the Internet and found that there are also some things that make brain cells grow including.... meditation, an enriched Environment, the act of learning, exercise, and even eating blueberries.  After reading that, I wondered just how many blueberries I needed to eat to get my brain cells back into a more normal range. Once again, I am laughing.  Wish we were alittle more like robots, and could plug ourselves into the power supply on the wall, and let the brain cell regeneration begin!

You know when you hear..."Laughter is the best medicine?" .....well maybe there is something to that after all!  Laughter reduces stress, and thereby, reduces the amount of brain cell loss!  Laughter boosts your immune system, and even lowers your blood pressure.  So there you have it from Dr. Katie... NOW go out and have a great day!!! 

Enjoy!  Katie G.

P.S.  How many blueberries did you say you ate today?  Oh and another piece of food for thought, and yes punn was intended.... If anyone wants to do the math, times our daily brain cell loss by the age we would like to live to, and subtract that from 10 billion, and that should give you a ball park number of how many brain cells we will have left by then.  Maybe it is a good thing that we all die oneday so we can go back and live with Heavenly Father to regenerate!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine Day

I hope that you have a fun Valentine day today, filled with lots of love, family, friends and frivolity.  My husband and I spent our day in Park City yesterday with our two children and their families who live there.  One family made us lunch and the other made us dinner.  We enjoyed the grandchildren, and played with them and gave them our Valentines.  They loved them.  O speaking of which, I added to my other blog, a few of the Valentines that I gave out this year to my little Grand kids and children.  I have to design them specially to fit the gift I am giving them, as that is the designer in me.  Things have to match.  Anyway, if you are in need of Valentines to Print go to that blog, and the link us under the blog header to get there.

Here is a printable valentine note card for you, or for you to print and take with you when you drop off a thoughtful little gift or card of love to those sisters you teach, just to let them know you are thinking of them.  I have to add one more thing... I don't think everyone will agree with me on this one but since this is my blog, I am going to share my opinion.  When I take a Valentine gift or card over to the sisters that I visit teach, I don't consider that my visit for the month. I consider it a friendshipping effort, and a way that she really knows I am thinking of her.  I will also plan a Visit for the month, but when there are holidays and I feel so inclined to drop something by, that isn't the visit. 

Happy Valentine Day!!!  Love, Katie

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

February 2011 Visiting Teaching Message

The Visiting Teaching message for February is entitled "A restoration of all things."  It can be found in the Ensign, Feb. 2011, page 7.  I have provided the direct link to this message by clicking on the post title, and I encourage you to go to the site and once there, beautiful Mo Tab Choir music will begin playing so you can enjoy reading the message even more. Music puts our hearts in a very receptive mood and I believe it also provides inspiration as well.   The Church website has really been changing, and I encourage you to go take a look around and see all the neat new things they have included.   Enjoy your February Visiting Teaching. Be sure to scroll down and see your Valentine from me and go to my other blog to get some darling Valentine ideas, and printables.  Love, Katie G.

Happy Valentine Day

Have you looked at the numbers of people visiting this blog lately.  The number is over 100,000 visitors and that is totally amazing to me.  I love it, and it really makes me feel like this blog is worth keeping and continuing.  So.... though this is a repeat from last year, I wanted to repost this Happy Valentine Day poem that I wrote for you, to say thanks for all the visits, to this blog.  It is heartwarming to think that possibly some of my ideas and suggestions have helped others to serve the Lord in their callings, and in particular in their Visiting Teaching calling.  How blessed I feel to be a apart of a wonderful sisterhood.
Happy Valentine Day!
Love, Katie G.
P.S.  I have posted some really cute ideas for Valentines Day on my other blog.  Click on the link just under the title of this blog to magically take you there.

General Conference Talks

Hear the words of the living prophets.
General Conference Reports
Proceedings of Recent General Conferences
There is no question in my mind, that we who call ourselves Mormons, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints are indeed Christians. Those who would say otherwise remind me of the words my Savior, Jesus Christ spoke as He hung upon the cross... "Father forgive them, for they know not what they do." This same Jesus Christ attoned for my sins, and died that we all might live.

What shall we give?

<>Other wonderful Christmas Videos, go to \

An Apostles Easter Thoughts on Christ

"This Easter and throughout the year, may we have uppermost in our minds His divine teachings, the unparalleled example of His pure love, and His willing sacrifice of self to accomplish the holy purposes of God, the Eternal Father." The First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints"

This short video is an Important message from the mouths of our Prophets!

My sister sent this to me today and I feel like it is an important enough message, that I wanted to share it with all of my blog readership. The words spoken are directly out of the mouths of our Prophets, past and present. Hear them, heed them. Love, Katie G. You can find this at this link

July 24th - Pioneer Day

July 24th - Pioneer Day
Click on the picture and it will take you to the last post. Did you get your Visiting Teaching done by today? If not, just keep on trying, just like the pioneers. I would love to hear what you have learned from these wonderful Pioneer Women's stories. I know that I have learned alot about sacrifice, and persecutions of the early saints, and of a strong testimony that these Pioneers had to have to endure all that they did, and gave in establishing zion. Once again, I say, Blessed, honored Pioneer! If you would like to comment, please email me at or click on the link and comment on the last story. Happy Pioneer Day! Love, Katie G.

July 22 -Maggie Anna Ferrell Orr

July  22 -Maggie Anna Ferrell Orr
Copy and paste into your address bar and this will take you to the story of Maggie Anna Ferrell Orr, another of the wonderful Pioneering Women.

By now you should be alittle curious about your pioneer heritage.

By now you should be alittle curious about your pioneer heritage.
Do you want to find out if you have Pioneer ancestry. This site is most useful to those who have had members of their family tree that belonged to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints during the Mormon migration period of 1847-1868. By the way, the goal for this Pioneer Women Journey is about to reach it's end. You only have one more day to do your Visiting teaching, before the 24th of July, which was the goal. You still have time to push the proverbial handcart up the hill, so get out and get it done. Share a pioneer story with your sisters, and you have pleanty to choose from right on this site.

My broken wagon wheel, hath bit the dust!

My broken wagon wheel, hath bit the dust!
Wo is me, I am so behind on my own treck of keeping up wonderful Pioneer women posts. Actually I have a great excuse, and almost made it when I realized how little I have to complain about. Ok, so I am going to tell you anyway. My air conditioning has been off for 6 days now, and I am having to live in my basement, though my computer in upstairs. It is ten degrees cooler in the basement, but my main floor has been up to 92 degrees inside my house. Wo is me.... and what do I have to moan about. I began thinking about the pioneers in their covered wagons, crossing the hot, hot prairie, and their only hope of relief from the blazing sun is the cool shade of a tree, or a stream, or night time if it cooled off enough for them to actually sleep. I have not slept well until I decided to go in the basement. Wo is me. What do I have to complain about. I have been so sick from the heat and a medication change that I have been nauseated all day long. So what do I do... hop in my car and go to Walgreens and get some acupressure wrist bands that took away some of my nausea. Wo is me, but what do I have to complain about.... the pioneer women suffered without any relief. If herbs didn't work for them, or if they didn't have access to them, they just suffered. I feel so blessed to live in this day and age where even if I have to be inconvienenced by having no air conditioning, I still can go in my basement, or hop in my car and turn up the air full blast, or just drive down to a store and walk around and shop, or even go to the pool and cool down that way. You know that poem.... "Father forgive me when I whine, I have two legs, the world is mine"? I have no reason to complain, but you still didn't get the updates on the Pioneer women because I am still too sick and hot to stay upstairs long enough to do them. Count this one as an update and count your blessings along with me. The wagon might be broke for a bit, but once the wheel is back on, the wagon will keep on rollin. Now, I am going to hurry back down stairs and try to replenish the sweat that is pouring off my face and body with gatorade. Don't give up on me, I will be back! Love, Katie G.

July 17 - Handmade by the Pioneers

July 16 - Margaret Alice McBride

July 16 - Margaret Alice McBride
....You know the drill... click on the photo and it will take you to the story of Margaret Alice McBride. Enjoy! Katie G

July 15 - Julia Ann Chapman Lee

July 15 - Julia Ann Chapman Lee
This story is told through the eyes of Julia's husband. It is a short but touching story, all to familiar to Pioneers. Click on the image and you will be directed to the story.

July 14 - Louisa Miller Belleston

July 14 - Louisa Miller Belleston
I thought it was important to realize that not all pioneers only traveled from Missiouri, Ohio or other Eastern States, but many were converted to the church and traveled from overseas. This story tells of the Church Emigration fund, and Louisa's family traveling first by boat and then on to Utah. Their travel took them 8 months to get there, with their fair share of challenges. Click on the picture and it will take you directly to the story.

July 13 - Mary Ann Payne

July 13 -  Mary Ann Payne
This is a cute little story about Mary Ann Payne that I found, and I know that you will enjoy reading about her. She is the top right photo. Click on the photo and it will direct you to the link that has the story. Enjoy!

July 12 - Margaret McNeil (Ballard)

July 12 - Margaret McNeil (Ballard)
Click on the picture of Margaret and you will be taken to the link that you can read about her.

July 11 - Jane Jenkins Howe

July 11 -  Jane Jenkins Howe
Please click on the photo to see the history of Jane Jenkins Howe entitled - A WIDOW SUPPORTING HER FAMILY

July 10 - Julia Anne Phippen Eldredge Evans

July 10 - Julia Anne Phippen Eldredge Evans
Click on the photo and it will take you to the link to read about Julia Anne Phippen Eldredge Evans

July 9 – Camilla Dorothy Jacobsen Corbett

July 9 – Camilla Dorothy Jacobsen Corbett
Click on the photo and it will take you to the link to read about this amazing Pioneer woman

July 8 - Catherine Gougar Goodman

July 8 - Catherine Gougar Goodman
This is a short story of a non-Utah Pioneer woman, who was taken by the indians as a little girl, and to read the rest of the story, you will have to click on the picture and it will take you to the link you need.

July 7 - Elizabeth Case Miliam Wheeler

July 7 - Elizabeth Case Miliam Wheeler
The life of this marvelous Pioneer woman can be found by clicking on the photo which will take you directly to the link. This woman is classic Mormon History as her story tells of her being apart of so many of the historical accounts in Nauvoo, Hauns Mill, handcart pioneers, and so much more. I found her story so interesting that I couldn't stop reading until it reached the end. It was also interesting to me that she was given 3 Patriarical blessings in her lifetime, and she was truely a wonderful woman. I know you will enjoy reading about her as I did. Love, Katie G.

July 6 - Pioneer Cooking

Since all of us cook, I thought it might be interesting to find out what Pioneer Women cooked, how they did it and recipes they used. I found quite a few recipes, but I would like to open this one up to you and if you have any authentic pioneer recipes, please send them to me and I will add them to this post. My email is just to the right of this page.

Click on this link to take you to the Pioneer Recipes:

I was also thinking that if you were to copy some of these recipes and print them off, that might be a fun handout for the Sisters you Visit Teach!

July 5 - Ann Parker

July 5 - Ann Parker
Sorry I am so late posting this story, but click on the photo and it will take you to the link where her story will be told.

July 4 - Margaret Ann Howard McBride (My Ancestor)

July 4 - Margaret Ann Howard McBride (My Ancestor)
I had to post about someone very special to me on this day. I chose one of my ancestors whose trek took her with the other ill fated pioneers of the Martin Handcart Company. I could not locate her photo, so I substituted one of her son's wives photos. Click on the photo and it will take you to the account given by two of her sons, of what she and her family dealt with after joining the church.

July 3 – Elizabeth Simpson Haigh Bradshaw

July 3 – Elizabeth Simpson Haigh Bradshaw
I hope that you are enjoying so far, the stories of these wonderful Pioneer women. I hope too that your testimony will strengthen as you read about those who came before us and the unimaginable things that they had to do to pioneer the way for us to have what we do in our wonderful church. My gratitude and love for them has deeply increased, and I would echo the words in the hymn..."Blessed, honored, Pioneer!" Click on the photo of Elizabeth and it will take you to her history and for more reading about Elizabeth, you can go to Also there is another account of Elizabeth found in a book that you can read by going to this link...,+Elizabeth+Simpson+Haigh&source=bl&ots=UJEtgTZ4Sf&sig=2h_qWhKeYEiK6hM8ev95tiRuu2M&hl=en&ei=kHE-SpW4JpDosQOe94n0CA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=4

July 2nd - Diana Lucina Spicer Block

You can find the posting of a marvelous Pioneer woman, whom I have chosen to spotlight on my other blog that is located at and just click on the link and it will take you there! I hope you are having some good Pioneer fun!

July 1st - Anne Eliza Leavitt Baker

July 1st - Anne Eliza Leavitt Baker
Did you think I forgot? Actually my life became so hectic today, that I am just getting some time to make my first Pioneer woman post. I hope you will enjoy reading about these marvelous women who came before us. I hope that you can feel their courage and understand that we too have a purpose for living in our generation. We are the generation that lives to prepare for the second coming of Christ,though none of us know when that will be.... and with that I will just say... Keep your wagons rolling along in good works, do your Visiting Teaching, strengthen your sisters through your testimony and determination to get your visiting Teaching done. Click on the photo and it will take you to the link where you can read about our Anne, who is most likely the woman in the middle front of the photo, holding the baby.

Visiting Teaching Tips, handouts and Ideas
For many years, I have been creating very cute and fun things to take to the ladies I Visit Teach. I have shared from time to time, my ideas with others and they have really appreciated them. I decided that since I do these anyway, I would start doing one every month and then post it on this blog to share with anyone for their Visiting Teaching. I do need to make a disclaimer.... the ideas, thoughts, stories, graphics etc. used are created by me and they are not in any way official LDS Church quotes, handouts or ideas. They are my creations or others as noted, except for the quotes that will come directly from the Monthly Visiting Teaching message found in the Ensign. Also, many thanks to the talented designers of the digital paper and elements that I use to create the beautiful artwork, and handouts you see on my blog.

You can go to and look up and even print the monthly message if you do not have your own Ensign magazine subscription in English or to choose to read the Liahona or Ensign in a different language go to
For Spanish you can go to

I highly recommend you get your own subscription because you will find a wealth of really good & wholesome, moral reading, that you can't find anywhere else. If you go to and click on "Gospel Library" then click on "Magazines" you can order your own Ensign, Liahona, New Era, or Friend magazines.
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When you click on the pictures or ideas that I have on my site for you to download, sometimes the picture ends up really large. What you need to do to size it is to go to the "page button" then click on zoom. Take it down to 50% and that should fit better on your screen for viewing . Also, if you right click "save picture as" then save it to a file on your computer, you can size it using your own desktop publishing program and then print it off with my compliments! Enjoy!

A February Enrichment Idea

A February Enrichment Idea
"The Hearts of Angels" dinner & program. Click on the picture and it will take you to where you can find the entire program written out. Once you get to the site which is my Visiting teaching surprise, make sure to scroll down a ways because there are alot of other great ideas, printables and handoust before you will find this wonderful "Angelic' program. Enjoy!

Enrichment Ideas Anyone?

Enrichment Ideas Anyone?
I have also been enrichment leader from time to time as well as have been asked to do many projects for Enrichments. I am not sure if anyone would be interested in some of my ideas, but if you are, please leave me a comment and I will respond. One thing that relates to Visiting Teaching that I wanted to share is something I have taught for many years, and in fact my Daughter in her Park City ward just used this idea in their Super Saturday last week for the second time. It is Glass etching and it is really pretty easy and turns out to be a great project. The etching I do is etching glass casserole or platters with the name of the person who will receive this gift or for whomever is signed up for the class. I have given etched casserole dishes as wedding gifts and have taken many casseroles, rolls, cakes, and all kinds of goodies to people, and always get my dish back, because it has my name etched in it. Go to to get instructions.

Gardening with Kids

Gardening with Kids
Read the idea below

"Returning to the Past" A Relief Society Activity Idea

This is an email I received from a wonderful sister as well as a new Relief Society President about an idea that they will be doing as a theme for their activities for this year. (if you have a great idea to share, please email me at and we can add it to all the other terriffic ideas!

Dear Katie,
I just found your blog. It is so great. I love the idea of the Hearts of Angels. I am trying to figure out how we can use it for our VT conference and incorporate some of the things for our VT interviews. I am a new R/S president and all these things we have to do throughout the year are a little overwhelming. I love all of you ideas. So much work involved, thank you for being willing to share with all of us! I would love anything else you could pass my way.
WE had the thought earlier to use a theme of "Returning to the past" for our activities this year. So all of your old-fashioned pictures will be great to use as invites and handouts.
You might be interested in the idea we had for our B-Day dinner. We always have a progressive dinner in December to the homes of different sisters. We divide them up into about 5 smaller groups and go around to the different sisters homes in the ward. Because of the weather we cancelled it and had it at the church. We decided to do it for our B-Day dinner instead when the weather would be better. We are having the women bring a sack lunch with them and to wear something old, like a grandmothers broach or shawl, or to dress up in the time of the 1800's, and to bring a pint jar with a lid. We will have the sisters make lemonade at the first house and take with them in the jar that they brought, and then go to the next house. At the last house we will have and old fashioned cake to serve like apple walnut cake or something like that.
We still have some details to work out but at the end each member of the presidency will be at a different home and will share a prepared script. It will be written as if they were at the very first R/S meeting when the prophet Joseph Smith organized the R/S with just a handful of women.
Anyway, thank you for sharing what you have! You have a great talent!
Stacey McClellan - Blackfoot, Idaho

SELF RELIANT SISTERS BLOG HAS A GREAT ACTIVITY ABOUT GARDENING WITH KIDS - go to It is well worth the time and a terriffic idea as Spring is just around the corner! Here is a tiny bit of information that you will see at the site.....

Gardening with Kids has great tips on getting kids started with gardening. Give your child some space; literally! Kids loving having spaces that are all their own, whether it`s their own desk area in the house, or the tent they've created with chairs and blankets in the family room. The same is true for gardening. Dedicate a small plot of the garden just for them. Put a fancy border around it, perhaps purchase one of the stepping stone making kits found at crafts stores in which they can mold their name and make their hand print.
Let them join you at the nursery. Let your kids know you value their opinion. Ask them which kinds of plants, flowers, and vegetables they like. Explain what will work well in your garden and what won't.
Give them (limited) choices. While you're at the nursery, ask them if they'd like pansies or petunias, marigolds or zinnias. This will give them the feeling of power without letting it get out of control.
Remind them money doesn't grow on trees. With older children discuss the budget. Let them help select seeds and blossoming plants at the nursery - and turn it into a math lesson. Let your child do the money calculations; they can tell you when the money runs out.
Let your child do what he will (especially if you have a preschooler). Let him dig, explore, play with bugs. You may be tempted to steer your child in another direction (like actually watering or weeding his garden), but this is a great way for your child to explore this exciting new universe.
Plan, plan, plan. If you have older children, say 8 or 9 or older, let them plot out their own garden on paper. Provide him or her with graph paper, pencils and seed catalogs. Give them a group of flowers and vegetables from which to choose, and then let them draw out their garden.
Get them their own gardening tools. Nothing will motivate your little gardener more than having her own little shovel, her own gardening gloves, and her own watering pail. And don't forget those bright colored rubber boots.
You need to go to the site and explore all the rest of the links and ideas.