When faced with life's challenges,
it is Important to Remember
that although Daniel was saved from the lions,
he was not saved from the Lion's Den.

Monday, December 2, 2013

You Can Do Anything

You Can Do Anything,
But Not Everything. 

I really need to remember this one.  I don't say "no" nearly well enough for my own sanity!  Actually, I think there is a find line between doing all that you CAN do, and trying to do Everything.  I know that the life we live is really not long at all.  I know there are so many good things to accomplish.  I am just afraid to face my Heavenly Father with things that I should be doing, but they are left undone. 
I seem to get overwhelmed so easily these days.  I have battled depression for many years.  It has not been an easy fight.  I struggle with what would seemingly be simple things.  I am tired most of the time.  I have gone on and off the medication for years.  I have tried in the past to go for a few years without it, before becoming overwhelmed and needing to get back on it again. 
As I have gotten older, it is harder to get off the meds.  That can be even more frustrating for me.  I really want to be well.  Sometimes, I think I should be able to do more and be more.  I tell myself that "it is all in my head" and it is!  But that doesn't change the struggle. 
There are people out there who think that I should be able to just "have faith and pray" and it will all get better.  I have not managed that one yet.  I do have faith.  I do pray.  But I also struggle with depression and anxiety on a day by day basis.  I know it is worse when I am overwhelmed with too many things.  Even if they are all good things, I can still be overwhelmed. 
One important thing that I have learned in this lasting battle, is that we all fight our own demons.  We all have crosses to bear.  Life isn't easy for any of us.  My trials might not be as difficult as yours, but they are mine, and they are what I need in my life to grow and become closer to Him. 
Even Paul had his trials. He referred to him as a "thorn in his side". 
2 Corinthians 12:7-10
And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.
 For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.
 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
 10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.

His grace is sufficient for us.  We will find our strengths through our weaknesses.  What beautiful promises.  So, I don't know what I am supposed to learn from my own thorns, but I know that the Lord will be with me through this.   I know that these weaknesses will become strengths for me.  I know that I will learn and grow because of them.  I know that when I choose the right, I will become as strong as He needs me to be. 

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Another Letter To God

"The soul is healed by being with children."

This letter was harder for me to answer.  Probably because I worry too much.  I worry about things that have happened, mistakes I have made, and I worry about the future with all it's possibilities.  I know that many of the things I worry about never come to pass, but still, I worry.  I worry about being worthy to enter Heaven.  I worry about making the right choices and giving enough love to others.  

"Worry is like a rocking chair, 
it gives you something to do, 
but doesn't get you anywhere."  
Erma Bombeck
Here is a child who is not worried about the normal, childish things.  They just want to go to Heaven and see God.  What a beautiful wish.  What a pure heart.  And what a sweet reminder to me about what is most important after all.  I will remember this letter for a very long time. 

Dear Child,
Thank you so much for your letter.  I am so happy that you want to live with me in Heaven.  That is what I want too.  Right now, I need you on earth with your family, learning and growing and becoming the person that I need you to be. 
When you have faith, it leads you back to me.  It helps you to make good decisions and it helps you to keep my commandments. 
I am never far away.  You can talk to me in your prayers anytime that you would like.  I will always take time to listen.  I am aware of the good things you are doing.  I know who you are.  No matter what happens or what troubles you face, you will never be separated from my love.

Romans 8:38-39  
For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

You always have my love and I am with you here.


Friday, November 29, 2013

A Letter To God From A Child

"Children are the hands 
by which we take hold of heaven."

Sometimes, weird things happen to me in my work.  We have a special mailbox in the grade school that the Chamber of Commerce and Santa's Kid's sponsors every year.  They collect all the letters and bring them to me.  I answer the Santa Letters from the kids that write.  Sometimes, those letters really touch my heart.  I always send a letter back with a Candy Cane.  I am used to those types of letters. 
A couple of months ago, I received two letters to God.  That was something that has never happened to me before and I did not know what to do about it.  I did not know who they were from until the mom came in and asked my clerk if I would answer them for her children.  I put them in my desk and ignored them because I didn't feel worthy to speak for God in any capacity.  
This week, the mom came back in and talked to me (so I couldn't ignore her).  She told me that her kids have been through a lot in their lives.  She asked me to please answer their letters.  Their birthdays are on Thanksgiving and it would mean so much to them to have an answer.  I told her that I really felt inadequate for this one and asked her to take the letters to a minister.  She insisted that I would do the job exactly right for them.   She had more faith in me than I have ever had in myself. 
So, I wrote the letters.  I answered them as simply and as sincerely as I knew how.  Perhaps, that is all any of us can do.  Then, we have to trust God to do the rest. 

Dear Child,

I love getting pictures and letters from my children.  I always like to see the good things that you are making.  I am only as far away as a prayer and I always hear you.  You can talk to me anytime.  You can find me in the world around you and in the Scriptures. 
The Bible says:

“By this shall men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another” (John 13:35).

One of the best ways to show love for Me is to be kind to others. Love your family, your friends and even those who are mean to you.  That can be hard, I know, but you will feel better when you make good choices. 
Thank you so much for thinking of me.  Keep praying and keep learning. 

I love you so very much.


Thursday, November 28, 2013

I Am Thankful

“Gratitude doesn't change the scenery.  
It merely washes clean the glass you look through 
so you can clearly see the colors.”
Richelle E. Goodrich

I have so much to be thankful for.  This man, this crazy, smiling, thinks he is Santa man, makes me smile and laugh  He teaches me to find joy in the ordinary.  To not be so weary.  He loves me even in the midst of my trials, even when I struggle.  He cherishes me, nurtures me, and most of all, he cares for me.  
I have found just a little of my Heavenly Father's love in his eyes.  I can sometimes see myself close to how he sees me.  We have been married over 19 years now, and in all that time, he never yells at me.  He never criticizes me.  He just loves me and supports me and helps me find my way.  
Learning to be grateful for him, doesn't change him, but it changes me.  It helps me to see him in the ways that made me fall in love with him the first time.  I see the color of happiness in his eyes and I know I am home. 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Count Your Rainbows

Count your Rainbows,
Not your Thunderstorms.

I have lived an interesting life.  One that seems, too often, to be full of thunderstorms.  Once, many years ago, when we first moved up to the mountains, the girls were very young.  They were also very afraid of storms. 
Now, if you have never lived in the mountains, the lightening can seem very close.  It actually has struck the trees outside my house.  Our first storm was the worst.  I was at work and received a frantic phone call from three little girls who were crying.  I rushed home to find each and every one of them hiding under the kitchen table, complete with pillows and blankets and stuffed animals. 
I had to dry their eyes, wipe their tears and teach them, slowly, to learn to like watching the storms from the safety of our front porch. They had to learn that after those fear-filled mountain thunderstorms, come the rainbows, and they are amazing to behold. 
In my own life, I have had to same experiences as my daughters with the storms that often seem to surround me.  I get so enmeshed in the fear and the pain, that I can't find the rainbows.  I don't even look up to see them.  My eyes only focus on the things I am afraid of.  That is a hard way to live.
I am trying to find the rainbows around me each day.  The little moments of wonder that slide through the raindrops.  The kindnesses and caring of those I didn't expect it from.  The abundance of blessings that I didn't quite realize I really have.  I am learning to count the rainbows. 
And through the rainbows, I am learning to see God's hand in my life.  And that is the most amazing blessing of all. 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Importance of Family

"The most important cause of our lifetime is our families. If we will devote ourselves to this cause, we will improve every other aspect of our lives and will become, as a people and as a church, an example and a beacon for all peoples of the earth."
—M. Russell Ballard, "That the Lost May Be Found"

My family means the world to me.  We have been through a lot together.  We have learned together, played together and grown even closer together.  I have children who are now grown, many with children of their own, and we have the last three teenagers, still at home.  
I was talking to one of my customers today at the Post Office, and she was sharing with me how much she loves the relationship that she has now, with her grown children.  And how very different it is to mother them as they grow older.  I agree so much.  I love babies and children, I enjoy most of my time with teenagers, but I really love the friendships that I have developed with my children once they are grown and gone from the nest.  
Our opportunities to love and support each other do not go away with the diapers and the dishes and the laundry.  Now, I can take the time to listen and to love and encourage.  Now I get to hear their problems and the difficulties and their trials.  Now they actually might ask for advice (such a thing was never heard of when they were younger, as a matter of fact, if I wanted them to do something, I told them to do the opposite!)
My family means so much to me.  I can't begin to explain how my heart fills with more and more love as the years go by.  I enjoy getting to know each of them as adults.  I believe in devoting myself to the cause of family.  I believe in always letting them know how much they are loved and needed in my life.  No matter what path they choose, I believe that God shared them with me to love, to honor and to cherish, for all the days of their lives and long into the eternities. 
My family, are each gifts and joys in their own way.  They are each a blessing and a comfort.  They are my children and my friends.  My Heavenly Father has taught me to love through the service to my family.  I am filled with gratitude each time I think of them and remember their unique attributes.   

Monday, November 25, 2013

Have a Little Gratitude

"Sincerely giving thanks not only helps us recognize our blessings, 
but it also unlocks the doors of heaven 
and helps us feel God's love."
~Thomas S. Monson,~ 

I am working on this.  I am often grateful.  I want to see the blessings in the world around me.  That is one of the reasons that I started blogging.  It helps me to recognize the gifts that surround me.   And I am surrounded, each and every day, by thousands of blessings.  I just don't always recognize them that way.  Sometimes, the things that happen in life can seem so overwhelming.  I get tied up in the day to day difficulties and I can't seem to remember to recognize the blessings in the midst of the trials.  But still, they are all around me.  
Yesterday morning, we woke up to a fresh coat of snow.  It was glistening and white.  It was frosty and beautiful.  It was amazing.  I love sitting in a warm house, with the fire burning in the fireplace and watching the snow fall outside my window.  Winter has two sides for me.  It can be a burden or a blessing.  It all depends on how I look at it and on what is going on in my life at that moment.  Winter itself doesn't change, just the way I look at it.  
We have a loving Heavenly Father.    One who can't wait to bless us.  Who does bless us continually.  But we have to be willing to open our eyes and behold the blessings.  I know that I have had hard times in my life, but my point is that, even though things did not turn out quite the way I thought they would, in a very strange way, they have turned out much better than I have ever imagined.  I have so much more than I dreamed.  
It can be hard for me to focus on what I have.  It can be hard to remember the blessings.  But I can tell you, that when I do, I feel peace.  I feel the divine gift of my Heavenly Father's love.  I feel His tender mercies in the wonders that surround me.  They have always been there, I just needed to stop and look and heal.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Finding the Good in Others.

 "Recognize the good in others, not their stains. 
At times a stain needs appropriate attention to be cleansed, 
                      but always build on his or her virtues."
                  ~Richard G. Scott~, "For Peace at Home"

I am learning that it can be a hard road, to find the good in others, especially when they are working so hard to hide it.  It can be hard to recognize them as a child of our loving Heavenly Father.  It can even be hard to recognize myself that way.  I continue to struggle with it.  Especially when all my buttons are not only pushed, but stomped on with abundant joy. 
I can't control what others say to me, or to my children.  I can't control their own choices in their behavior. I can't control what they do or don't do.  But I can control myself and the way that I react.  I can control what I choose.  I can control what I say.  I don't always do that, but I can.
Today, I am grateful that the Lord has cleansed my stains.  I am grateful for His abundant mercies and love.  I am grateful that He cares for me in spite of myself.  Today, I want to be just a little more like Him and a little less like the person that I am.  Today, I want to choose how I act and not just react to a bad moment.  Today I want to become who He needs me to be.  
In this world of strife and pain, today I want to spread just a little more joy.  I want to share with you how very much you are loved.  We all make mistakes.  We all make bad choices.  We all sin.  But there is nothing we have done that He doesn't already know about.  There are no secrets in your life.  He is just waiting for you to bring all your burdens to Him and to release them into His keeping.  He will help us through the hard times.  We just have to have a little bit of faith in His Sacrifice and a little trust in His timing.  
Life is good.  Life is amazing.  Life is full of blessings and abundance if we will only take the time to see them.  
In this joyous season, today, may you be blessed with His peace and love.  May you find it within your hearts to overlook the stains of others, and also of yourself.  His forgiveness is not for the perfect, but for the imperfect that surround Him.  He will help us become who we are seeking to be if we will just walk with Him.  

Friday, October 18, 2013

Five Minute Friday - Laundry, a labor of love

On Fridays a bunch of us gather together over at Lisa Jo's place to write about a single prompt.  We spend five delicious minutes just writing.  Won't you come over and join us?  

1. Write for 5 minutes flat for pure unedited love of the written word. (On your blog or in the comments).
2. Link back over at Lisa Jo's and invite others to join in.
3. Go leave some comment props for the five minute artist who linked up before you.
It’s a great way to catch your breath at the end of a long week.

"The most memorable people in life 
will be the friends who loved you 
when you weren't very lovable".
 It has been a rough couple of years.  It has been some hard times.  We have struggled.  I have struggled.  Along with the hard times, I got to battle my constant companion, depression.  I have battled it off and on for most of my life.  I have wished and prayed that it was gone.  I have hoped that it never comes back, but it always does.  
This time, it came back with a vengeance.   I work full time.  My husband works full time.  I work days, he works evenings.  That way, one of us can always be available for the kids.  It works for us, it is not always easy, but it works.  
With my depression, it took all my energy just to get to work.  And more energy than I've ever imagined to get everyone where they needed to be.  I  spent as much time as possible in bed, under to covers.  I didn't make dinner, I didn't clean the house.  I was lucky that I even found the energy to answer the phone.  
My husband, in desperation I am sure, took to doing the laundry.  Not just his own clothes either.  He washed the girls clothes, the sheets, the towels, and even my clothes.  Not only did he wash the laundry, he hung it outside on the line that he made himself between the pine trees.  
For the past two years, he has done all the laundry.  Every. Single. Piece.  
As for me, I am finally doing a little better.  And now, even with my everyday fight with depression, my husband has reminded me that love can be found, each and every day, in a little bit of laundry.   

Now it is your turn.  What can you write in just five short minutes?

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Unplug technology. (for a set time)

 "Precious moments of opportunity to interact and converse with our children dissolve when we are occupied with distractions. Why not choose a time each day to disconnect from technology and reconnect with each other?
Simply turn everything off. When you do this, your home may seem quiet at first; you may even feel at a loss as to what to do or say. Then, as you give full attention to your children, a conversation will begin, and you can enjoy listening to each other."

I love this quote.  We live in this crazy-busy society.  It is non-stop movement.  We run here, there and literally everywhere.  We have appliances to make our work easier so that we have even more time to run faster.  We take the kids to dance, sports, school events, church, youth activities and even more events.  Sometimes, it seems as if it will never slow down.  Sometimes it seems as if I will never slow down.  Turning everything off seems like heaven to me right now.  Just think what it would be like to have no phone, no TV and no ipods.  I could actually hear my children when they are sitting next to me.  More important, they could actually hear me.  I think that busyness can be the curse of our society.  We get so wrapped up in so many good things, that we can't see the things that are better just around the corner.  It is harder and harder to hear the spirit of the Lord with all the noise and confusion in our lives.  So, I say, let's all turn off technology for a moment or a time or even a day.  Let's just take a few extra minutes to get acquainted again with the people around us who mean the most to us. Let's enjoy our time together and make it something really special.  

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Five Minute Friday - Ordinary

On Fridays a bunch of us gather together over at Lisa Jo's place to write about a single prompt.  We spend five delicious minutes just writing.  Won't you come over and join us?  

1. Write for 5 minutes flat for pure unedited love of the written word. (On your blog or in the comments).
2. Link back over at Lisa Jo's and invite others to join in.
3. Go leave some comment props for the five minute artist who linked up before you.
It’s a great way to catch your breath at the end of a long week.


"What's in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet."

My name is Patricia Ann.  I have never liked it.  It sounds fancy.  It is not who I see myself as.  My mother only used that name when she was angry.  THE WHOLE ENTIRE NAME!  Just like that.  When I heard my name is always meant that I was in trouble.
My mother also called me Pat.  That was my nickname for years.  Short and simple.  Boyish.  When I was very young, I had long, blond hair.   It was curly and beautiful.  When I went to school, girls had to wear dresses and couldn't do anything fun.  I got my hair cut short, like a boy's, and wore shorts underneath my dresses.
When I was in high school, I went  by Ann.  Also short and simple, but at least partly feminine, (I thought so anyway).  Sadly, very few people called me Ann.  I guess I never managed to look like someone named Ann.
Today, I am simple Patty.  Notice it is not even spelled with an i.  I am plain, and very, very ordinary.  And, believe it or not, that is OK with me.  I have learned to accept who I am.  As well as the very ordinary life that God has placed me in.  I have learned to bloom where I am planted.  I have learned that the world is often run by seemingly ordinary people.  The ones who are mostly not in the limelight, but are definitely busy.
I have learned that it is in doing the ordinary things in life, that extraordinary things happen.
I have learned that when I am willing to be ordinary, He makes me extraordinary. 
I was never really ordinary after all.  I just had to learn to see that.
I have been blessed to see extraordinary things.
And being what He needs me to be...well....that is enough.


Now it's your turn, what can you write in you own five minutes?  Don't forget to share it with the rest of us!

Monday, September 23, 2013

The Desires of Our Hearts

All my life, I have wanted to be a good parent.  A better one than my parents were to me.  I wanted my children to always know that they were loved and wanted in my life.  I wanted them to have the chance to grow and make their own decisions.  I wanted them to be children.
Sometimes, I would get angry with them.  Sometimes I would forget that they were children, still learning, still growing, still becoming.  Nevertheless, I wanted to do all that I could to exemplify the Savior in my life and explain my testimony and my love.
I used to be a yeller.  My older children all grew up without me knowing that a quiet voice can accomplish so much more than a loud one.  I had to grow up too.  I had to learn that I did not have to parent the same way I was parented.  I had to learn to be more Christlike in my own life, before I could teach them those things in theirs.  I never wanted them to need to learn through my mistakes.
I have learned that I have taught them more than I ever realized.  They love, they trust, they care.  They have grown into amazing adults.  They are all I could wish them to be.  They have their own ideas, dreams and visions for the future, and that is alright.  I want them to find their own way in this world and to hopefully remember what they were taught when they were small.
Most of all, I want them to remember that I loved them first.  That I never forgot them, even if I wasn't perfect.  Especially because I wasn't perfect. I want them to remember the good that I had to teach them.  I want them to remember the Savior in my actions.  I want them to be just a little better than I have been.
With true desire, I so often have pled:

More holiness give me, …
More patience in suff’ring,
More faith in my Savior, …
More tears for his sorrows,
More pain at his grief,
More meekness in trial,
More praise for relief.
More sorrow for sin,

I am still working on all of it.  But I am learning and loving and needing and so very blessed.  

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Sabbath Day Scribblings - Faith in Every Footstep

We pray with trust for strength and guidance—just as our forebears did. That's what it means to walk with faith in every footstep. It was so for our pioneer ancestors, and it must be so for us today. We must instill in our children and grandchildren the same spirit that drove the footsteps of the pioneers."

—M. Russell Ballard, "Pioneer Faith and Fortitude—Then and Now"

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Five Minute Friday - She

On Fridays a bunch of us gather together over at Lisa Jo's place to write about a single prompt.  We spend five delicious minutes just writing.  Won't you come over and join us?  

1. Write for 5 minutes flat for pure unedited love of the written word. (On your blog or in the comments).
2. Link back over at Lisa Jo's and invite others to join in.
3. Go leave some comment props for the five minute artist who linked up before you.
It’s a great way to catch your breath at the end of a long week.



She is small, dark hair covering her head.  She is wiggly with blond curls.  She is tanned with brown flyaway hair.  She is mighty with strength in voice and in adversity. She is tall in stature and beauty.  She is everything I have ever dreamed to be.  She is the forgiveness of my mistakes, a combination of my strengths.  She is the person that I love, more that life itself.  
In my life, I have many She's.  I have 7 wonderful girls and 7 wonderful grand-daughters.  So much love spread into so many people.  So much of what I believe in and admire.  So much of what I always wanted to be.  Yet, every single one, different in her own way.  Strong and sure and mighty and brave.  So different from their mother and grand-mother.  
These beautiful girls keep me strong and focused.  They remind me of those things that are most important in my life.  They are my past, my present and my future all in different bundles.  I remember each as a little child.  And I have watched so many growing and learning and loving.  
Their personalities are different, but they love much the same;  unconditionally and without guile. They are amazing.  They are my greatest joys.  They are my loves and my life.  
They are all my example of SHE.  


Now it is your turn.  What can you write in just five minutes? Don't forget to join us over at Lisa Jo's and share your own story!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Five Minute Friday - Mercy

Today is a great day to be a Friday!  It also happens to be one of my favorite days of the week.  This is the day when we join up with Lisa Jo over at at Her Place. 
We gather together to spend 5 collective minutes writing on a single prompt. 
                                                         The rules are easy:
1. Write for 5 minutes flat for pure unedited love of the written word.
2. Link back over at Lisa Jo's and invite others to join in.
3. Go leave some comment props for the five minute artist who linked up before you.
It’s a great way to catch your breath at the end of a long week.

His Mercy
by Patricia A. Pitterle

I struggle in this life I live, 
Day by day, and up and down,
My heart hurts when life is hard 
With sorrows all around
Sometimes I move forward 
Or take a few steps back
But each trial teaches me 
The lessons that I lack.

I fall upon my knees each night 
Before I go to bed,
And plead with Him that He might know 
I'm willing to be lead.
I need to feel His comfort  
I need to know His love.
To know He will just direct my path
From His Home above.

My life is full of mercy
Even when my heart feels grief,
He comforts with His spirit
And brings my soul relief.
He walks with me and holds me tight
And I am sheltered in His arms
His Mercy saves me from my sins
and protects me from lasting harm.

His tender mercies touch my heart 
And whisper to my soul
All is well, all is right, 
I know I am not alone.
Even when I do not understand 
Why life hurts me so,
His promise is that I am loved 
More than I could ever know.


Now it is your turn.  What can you write in just five minutes?