Archive for September, 2009

Simply Simpler

Monday, September 28th, 2009

That’s what needed to happen.  Plain and simple…my life desperately needed to be simplified.  Why?  I’m glad you asked.  Allow me to list a few things that have recently caused a bit of a dust storm in my life…

Being called to serve as YW president

Girls Camp

Youth Conference

Writing for a Christmas Cd

Recording a Christmas Cd

Firesides, Conferences, Concerts…

You may look at that list and think, “I don’t know what she is complaining about.  It can’t be that difficult.”  In my defense, those are just the titles of the categories – the list doesn’t include all of the subcategories with details nor does it include things like meal preparations, grocery shopping, washing clothes, cleaning toilets, being a taxi driver, etc. 

About a month ago, when all of these things had been completed, the dust settled, and I discovered I was too busy. 

Well, duh.

I’m not the type of person who likes to be overly busy.  I mean, I know there are times in life where it can’t really be helped – there are more things on our plate than we dished up, and we have to deal with it.  But I’ve always needed time to regroup, contemplate, be still, think, ponder.  (I could probably think of several other synonyms, but I don’t want to show off.) 

Stillness was missing in my life. 

So I spent a couple of days deciding what needed to change, what needed to go, what needed to stay…and I implemented my new “plan” about two weeks ago.  I am so happy to report that life is moving at a reasonable pace again.  I am beginning to feel my heart rate slow and peace return.  It feels so good.  It wasn’t easy to make some hard decisions, but it was necessary.  I think I’m going to be happier for it.

While the dust was swirling, before it had settled, I came across this scripture in my morning studies…it was a lovely message from Heavenly Father.

“I the Lord have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee.” (Isaiah 42:6)

That is just what I needed – I needed an all-knowing, ever-loving Father to promise to stay by me and hold my hand. 

We all need that.  So, good thing the scriptures were written for all of us.

Here’s to SIMPLIFYING!

Blog to you soon,

Hilary

Pleasanton TOFW

Monday, September 21st, 2009

Okay, so we had a few glitches.  When does everything go perfectly smooth anyway?

We (Kris Belcher, her mom, Deann Flynn, her mom, Michael Wilcox and me) arrived in San Jose at 4:00 pm.   The first carload left the airport and Kris, her mom and I stayed behind because I was asked to pick up a bag that didn’t make it on the flight before.  Jessica, Jenny Oaks Baker’s pianist, checked her suitcase in SLC on the 12:30 flight, but her suitcase decided not to come.  Delta told Jessica it would be on my flight and so she asked if I would pick it up.  (Are you following all this?) 

To make a long story short, the Delta baggage claim was closed so I finally found a Delta service rep. using a white paging phone (it’s fun, I recommend it).  The bag wasn’t on my flight either.  This wasn’t good.  The bag had Jessica’s music and clothes for her performance that night.  I never found out how she got replacement music, but I do know she had to go to the mall and buy an outfit.

After my unsuccessful attempt to retrieve the suitcase, we began our journey from San Jose to Pleasanton.  It was supposed to take 30 minutes.  (Supposed is the key word.)  To make another long story short, it took 2 hours!  I missed my performance on Friday night because I was sitting in traffic!

Now, lest you think it was all a loss, there were several wonderful things that came out of the weekend. 

1. I got to spend time with Stacey Mohan.  This was her 10th TOFW – she must hold the record.

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2. I ate at Chili’s twice.  (It was right next to the hotel.)

3. An unexpected two-hour drive was made completely enjoyable by a wonderful couple – the Pepperman’s.  They told us stories of how they met and got engaged.  It was really fun!

4. I spent the day with 1,900 incredible women who are making a difference in the lives of everyone around them.

5. I received two gifts…both included chocolate.

6. I learned (again) that the Savior is patient with us.  He loves us and knows how hard we try.

7. I had a vanilla/orange ice cream cone that tasted like a dreamsicle.  YUMMO!

8. I didn’t sleep through my alarm clock when it went off at 3:40 am so I could catch my flight home.

9. I didn’t sneeze, cough or spontaneously combust during any of my songs.

10. I sang two songs from my new Christmas Cd – “Christmas Once Again” and “Is There Room.” 

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Have a great week!  Blog to you soon,

Hilary

Just around the corner…

Monday, September 14th, 2009

General Conference, that is.  It is just around the corner.  You just wait, it will be October before you know it and you’ll say, “Where did September go?” 

I love General Conference weekend!  During the Priesthood session of General Conference my mother-in-law takes her five daughters-in-law and oldest granddaughter shopping.  We all get to pick out a new pair of shoes, or jeans, or a shirt…or all of the above!  When I am not singing at the Deseret Book Ladie’s Night, then I get to go.  This time I will miss out on the shopping trip but I’ll be having a good ol’ time singing songs from my new Christmas Cd at the Joseph Smith Memorial Bldg, where they hold Ladie’s Night.

On Sunday morning of General Conference I love to make a yummy breakfast – usually cinnamon or orange rolls with an incredible cheese/egg dish that my mother-in-law has passed on to us.  It is sooooo good!  Then we play Conference Bingo with the kids during the morning session and a “Listen for the word” game during the afternoon session.

It makes me excited just thinking about it!

Did you have any favorite talks or quotes from Conference?  Here are a few of mine:

“We get what we focus on consistantly.”  Elder Pearson

“Wherefore, do not spend money for that which is of no worth, nor your labor for that which cannot satisfy.”  Elder Hales (2 Ne 9:51)

“As we walk in obedience,…we enjoy a continual flow of blessings promised by God in His covenant with us.”  Elder Christofferson

“You don’t have to spend time as a Laman or a Lemuel in order to know that it’s much better to be a Nephi or a Jacob.”  Elder Ballard.

“Throughout his life, President Monson has refined his ability to hearken to the will of the Lord.”  Elder Nelson  (I like this quote becuase I want to be like that.)

“When should we pray?  Whenever we desire!”  Elder Nelson

 Okay, I could go on and on, but I had better leave room for some of your favorites.  If you didn’t read “Man Down!” by President Erying from the Priesthood Session, be sure to take a minute and do that.  It was awesome!  It really inspired me in my calling in the YW.

Blog to you soon,

Hilary

“A little catch up…”

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

Helloooooo!

I am a little behind in my blogging…and I promised a blog post on a few things.  So, I’m just going to dive right in.

Cute Table Setting 

This has to be one of the cutest table settings I’ve done so far.  (If you don’t know already, I love setting the table for any kind of get-together.)  This was for our YW Board Meeting. 

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Dana Visits the Studio 

Dana Hicken, winner of the private concert auction, visited the studio while we were recording the Christmas Cd.  I was so excited to meet her and as it turns out, we have a mutual friend… Robin Merrill (who went to the TOFW in Orlando with me.)  Robin came to the studio too, along with Dana’s sister-in-law, Shirlene.  It was a pleasure to meet them.  Dana is as wonderful as I thought she would be.  We talked about YW stuff, music stuff and mom stuff.  While they were there, I recorded “What Child Is This.”  They promised not to tell how many times it took me to sing this one part.  Don’t even try to ask them, they won’t tell.  They have been sworn to secrecy.  The only thing I can tell you, is it was more than three times.

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Robin, Shirlene, Dana and Moi.

Famous Ring

My wedding ring is famous.  This is so exciting to me and practically more than my joyful heart can stand.  Here’s the scoop…

During the photo shoot for the Christmas Cd, another photographer in the studio asked if she could borrow my wedding ring.  She needed a picture of a ring, but the ones she had weren’t quite right.  No prob.  I let her borrow mine.  Luckily I had cleaned it that very morning.  She took pictures of my ring and then returned it.  I didn’t think much of it, until…

I was driving along I-15 and saw a picture of a ring that looked exactly like mine on a billboard.  I did a little detective work and sure enough, that is my VERY ring!  My ring is famous!  That makes me practically famous!  My ring is on a billboard.  What’s next?  Commercials? Endorsements?  Movies?  I can hardly wait. 

So, if you are driving on Southbound I-15 at the point of the mountain and you just so happen to see a billboard for American First Credit Union with a ring and a wrench on it…you can think of me.  (Yes, I have to share the stage with a man’s garage tool, but who cares.)

Kids Choir

While recording the Christmas Cd, we used a children’s choir on the song “First Lullaby/Silent Night.”  I told my 7 and 10 year olds they could participate.  The night before they came to the studio, I told my daughters that singing in a studio can be tricky and this choir has sung together a lot and so if it wasn’t working out (i.e., my children’s voices standing out like injured kitty cats) then I might have to invite them to not be in the choir. 

The 7 year old said, (and I quote…) “I’m out.  I’m not taking the risk.  What am I supposed to do?  Act like I have a sore throat in front of all the other kids?”  I laughed so hard. 

As it turns out, they both blended nicely and we didn’t have to pull them from the choir.  Shew.

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P.S. My daughter, there in the rainbow glasses…ya,…those are fake.  No prescription there.   It’s all about the look.  I’m not sure which “look” but it’s all about the look.

Last, but not least…

The Christmas Cd is totally done – it is off being copied and packaged and prepared for Christmas!  It is called “Christmas Once Again.”  It exceeded my expectations in every way.  Who wants to see what the cover looks like?  (I will post it if I receive a ridiculous number of people saying…”I do!  Oh, I do!!” 

Blog to you soon,

Hilary

…off to Boise for TOFW this weekend.