Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Reaching Out

Good morning sisters,
I hope you have had a chance to study and reflect today. The stories of the sons of Mosiah are just awesome(especially if you have primary kids because what youngster doesn't get excited about Ammon chopping off arms?)
There are so many lessons to learn from these chapters in the Book of Mormon. Two of my favorite are these - we can do hard things when we have the Lord with us; and We can do nothing unless we do it with love and charity.
These young men went in to a land of bloodthirsty people who hated them because of their race/heritage. They knew they could be killed onsite but they believed the Lord would protect them as they served Him. They were not great missionaries because they were born natural speakers or leaders. They became great as they trusted and moved forward in faith. As they made the effort, the Lord guided and made them into the men He wanted them to be.
It works exactly the same with us. We are expected to do hard things, things we feel unprepared for. When we step into the dark, the Lord brings His light and makes us capable and we are strengthened and we become more than we can be without Him. This I testify of wholeheartedly.
Do not shy away from challenges.
When the sons of Mosiah went into the land of the Lamanites, they were instructed to go forth with compassion, patience and long-suffering. They did not go there to reprimand or argue. They went as servants. They humbled them selves and showed respect and love for those they taught.
Charity is the pure love of Christ. It is not just doing things for someone. It is serving with love and compassion and sincere concern for their well-being. We are His hands. They are His children. There is no good excuse for failing to make an effort.
We can become more than we are by doing, serving and trusting in our Savior. The atonement provides this.
Yes, I am going to make this about ministering. I hear people complain about ministering but I will not stop talking about it because it is my primary responsibility and it is the primary way you will come to understand your purpose and build a stronger relationship with the Savior. I never understood this before I received this calling. It is a majorly important work. It is really the main work we, as sisters, have to perform. I cannot minister effectively to all the 400 or so sisters in our ward without you. I need you to help.
Please reach out to the sisters you have a stewardship over. Find them and keep an eye on them and let them know God loves them. Then report back and let us know how they are and what they need.
Love, respect and faith to trust the Lord as you do hard things in His name will bring blessings to your efforts in all you do.
I love you and the Lord loves you. I hope to see you soon.

Thought for a Day

It seems not so long ago that most of us understood that we could disagree with a person and still be friends and have respect for them. Today the message pushed by social media, politics and the agenda of the world seems to be, “No, I am right. You are wrong. If you don’t agree with me, you are a bad person and I can not associate with you.” This message has created so much animosity and ugliness. The desire to be right and prove others wrong is destructive. As daughters of God and sisters in Zion, we must be aware and not allow this spirit of contention to permeate our lives, our homes and our communities.
I believe that we all are doing our best to be who we believe God wants us to be. We are individuals with strengths and weaknesses that make each of us different and we each face a very specific journey that no one else can truly understand. As we deal with one another, we should remember this. We are not perfect. None of us are. If we wish for the Savior’s grace to redeem us, we must try to extend grace to others.
Many of you know that I am sometimes called, “Pumpkin.” That is because I used to use that name for a little girl who is very special to me. When she learned to talk, she called me “Pumpkin”. I love the little people in my life and am honored to be Pumpkin. There was a time, however, when I struggled to connect with children who were not mine. I used to babysit for a child and I wanted to love her but for various reasons it was not happening. I prayed about it and one day the thought came to me that “This is God’s child.” I realized that He valued her beyond measure and He expected me to do the same. It really changed my heart. I suddenly could not look at her without realizing how precious she was and I don’t think I have struggled to love another’s child since. This was a gift to me - to realize that I must try to see others through God’s eyes.
He loves each one of us and sees great value in who we are and in who we may become. I do not believe that He compares us and loves one more than another. He knows us as individuals with weaknesses and strengths and fears and anxieties. He loves us for all that we are and does not expect perfection. He roots for us and mourns with us and waits for us to come to Him. And more importantly, He expects us to love each other. It does not matter that we do things differently or come from different situations or have different struggles or opinions. We have no right to judge. We are to love. Period.
This world can be a harsh, cold place. As members of His church, we have an obligation to build Zion as a protection from the world. In Doctrine and Covenants 38:27, the Lord said, “Be one; and if ye are not one ye are not mine.”
The world wants to spread contention and build up the kingdom of the king of lies. It is becoming easier to see and harder to fight against. Take a moment, when you are frustrated, before you react, to recognize the forces that are at work.
“ For verily, verily I say unto you, he that hath the spirit of contention is not of me, but is of the devil, who is the father of contention, and he stirreth up the hearts of men to contend with anger, one with another.”(3 Nephi 11:29)
The following is one of my favorite talks. Most of you have heard it. Please listen to it again. It is deeper than you may remember. Consider how it applies to you .
I appreciate each of you and the unique and beautiful women that you are. I really do. Please forgive me for my imperfections which are many and look for the good in one another. You have the potential to do so much good in this world. Never forget who you are.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

B250 week 13

This is the next to last week of this semester.  Hard to believe.  This class has been a bit frustrating.  I only understand a portion of the stuff we have covered.  It is cool that we have had so much opportunity to explore analytics and such and I will play with these things in the future.  I really thought woorank was interesting and gave specific things I can do to improve my website.  I will definitely visit it again.  I do not know how to do some of the things it suggests but after school I will have some extra time to try to figure some of these things out.  I do appreciate the things this class has introduced me to.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

B 250 week 12

This week we learned more about optimizing our web sites and using social media effectively.  I have a hard time digesting and retaining a lot of this stuff at once.  I bookmarked some of the pages that looked particularly useful so that I can go back and use them later.

I have learned that original content is particularly helpful.  It is content not found elsewhere and any links to it will go back to my site.
I also need to add quick links to social media sites to make it super easy for users to share my site.
I also plan to come up with a survey - and more than one eventually - to find out what users most want to find on the site.

It has been a tough week because I have been pulled away from the computer and my school work too much - dealing with other people's problems.  I need to get more done on the site.

An interesting thing happened though - showing the importance of developing and not just letting things sit.  Last week I simply added an arrow pointing down so that users would scroll to find more information.  Since I did this, the conversion rate went from 2 to 32.  So, I got them to click.  Now I need to get them to stay.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

B250 week 11

Wow - only a few weeks left in this semester.  I feel bad because my website is not very developed.  I spend so much time doing school work that I have little time for the site.

This week we talked about landing pages and web site optimization and stuff like that.  I need to go in and make sure keywords are used effectively and also add original content that is shareable.  I will need to go back over my notes and make sure I do all I can to make my site easy to use and find.

One thing - I am much more interested in optimization than I am in google aps.  This is very useful information. Optimizing means to make sure that users find what they are looking for and can maneuver easily. I will have lots of work on the website to do over the break. I also have people wanting me to do sewing projects for them and I just can't do that until this semester ends.  I think the summer break will be so busy that it will seem gone before it even begins.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

B250 week 10

This week our goal was to activate an ad words campaign which I did 2 weeks ago.  Also, we are starting a project due in 2 weeks.  We have to change things in our ads and/or keywords and evaluate the changes in our results.  I have to admit that it is kind of fun to see things happen.  I am going to spend most of today working on that site.  I am starting to solidify - in my head - what I want to do.  Design-wise I just don't know.  I might talk to Renee because she is an artist and might have some helpful suggestions.

I have found this semester to be much more of a challenge than I ever expected college to be.  I always thought I was the smart one but -dang, this is hard.  Programming is kicking my butt.  I am taking less credits next semester but they are all programming classes.  I am more than a little afraid.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

B250 week 9

We learned about Google Analytics this week.  We did not actually learn about it but rather learned how to apply it.  I am not sure about the cost because the wording was vague.

I linked my AdWords and Analytics.  Analytics is tracking my website.

I checked my quality scores on my keywords and "sewing" is still the only effective one.  I will develop the site more and see what happens.

Last week I worked a lot on the site.  I liked the way it looked and then something happened and all of the pages became copies of the same.  I found out that it was because of the "footing" setting.  I turned it off and now I have to start over.  I have now got the "about" stuff on the home page and the "contact" page looks good.  Everything else is a mess and the Blog doesn't work at all.  I don't know how to fix that.

Such fun.  I thought using a host with "drag and drop" would make things easier but it is a real pain.