Totally “Fort Worth” It!

Hermana Kelsey 9:2 -email-

Dear familia!

What?!?! You got a new dog?! Wow that is crazy. Hey Mom, remember how you said you weren’t going to get another dog for a really long time, if ever? I guess that didn’t work out like you thought it would. 🙂 Ha ha ha. That’s awesome though. She is very cute. I really like the name Esther for her too. I just read that story very recently in the Bible and I really love it. It is definitely one of my favorites. 🙂

Wow! So this week flew by. The weeks lately have been going way too fast. In about 3 weeks Sister Q. will be going home. I will be letting you all know about my new companion the Monday before, because that is when we get transfer calls. I have a feeling that President might have me train this next transfer. I’m super nervous. I don’t feel like I’m ready for that kind of responsibility yet. But soon I am going to be one of the oldest sisters out. At the end of this transfer, there will be 3 spanish sisters going home (Sister S., [my companion before Sister Q.] Sister O., and Sister Q.). There are only 3 other sisters that have been out longer than me (Sister W., Sister S., and Sister V.). Sister V. has already trained once, and Sister S. is really sick (she is allergic to basically every kind of food. She can only eat fruit, some vegetables and fish.), so she might even go home. So basically it is between me and Sister W. But who knows. Everything will happen the way it is supposed to.

So we didn’t have a baptism this week. 🙁 We decided to move it to this coming Friday, because she felt  more comfortable with a little more time to prepare. But now she is missing in action! She was supposed to be at church yesterday to have her interview, but she never showed up. We stopped by her apartment twice to see her, but she wasn’t there, and we called her phone probably 15 times. We’re not really sure where she went. So hopefully we can find her and get everything figured out. But we did have some really cool things happen yesterday at church. So Sister Q and I were sitting the in the chapel as church was about to start, and lo, and behold, guess who walks in?! 3…that’s right, not 1, not 2, but 3! of our investigators that we had dropped a little while ago, come walking into the chapel! It was amazing!!. We didn’t even ask them to come or anything, but their relative who is a member has been working really hard on them and somehow got them to come to church! And they want us to start teaching them again! Hallelujah!! It’s a miracle! 🙂 Ha ha ha. But yeah we were super excited.

One other person that came was Carrie. I don’t remember if I told you about her. She is 14 (well she just had her birthday, so now she is 15), and we were teaching her for quite a while. She had a baptismal date, but when it started getting close, and she told her mom (who is a member), her mom told her she shouldn’t even get baptized, because she swears. So then after that she decided she didn’t want to get baptized anymore. After that she got really cold towards us, and didn’t really pay attention when we taught her. And then she stopped praying, coming to church, and reading her scriptures. So we couldn’t go see her anymore. We were still teaching her dad, and so we would go to her house still, and every time she saw us she was just really cold and borderline rude to us. But we were still nice to her. Anyway, so on Saturday, her mom fed us. So it was all the missionaries in our district (the elders and us), the Hermana, and also Carrie. When we came in the door, like most Hispanic households, the women always kiss each other on the cheek. When we walked in Carrie kissed us, because that is what you are supposed to do, but there wasn’t any feeling behind it. While we were eating dinner, Carrie just came in the room, and started hanging out with us. She didn’t really say much, but she listened a lot to what we were saying. By the end of the evening, she had warmed back up to us and even hugged us both at the end. And then she was at church again! It was awesome. We can tell now that she missed us when we weren’t coming to see her, and now she can tell the difference between the good spirit that we bring into the house, and the bad spirit that her siblings, who are not making good choices, bring into the house. We’re still not sure what is going to happen with her, but now there is at least a little hope for her future. 🙂 🙂 🙂

On Monday, we got our car switched to a different one. I am now driving a brand new 2012 Chevy Malibu! That thing is nice, I’m not gonna lie. When we got it, it only had 50 miles on it. That is how new it is! It is a really smooth ride. 🙂 I kind of think I am going to want to buy a new car when I get home, but I don’t think that is going to happen. Well, I mean I know that is not going to happen. But anyway, I can still dream right? 🙂

Anyway, I better go now. I’ll be safe tonight. 🙂 I love you!!

Dad: Ha ha. Don’t you hate when people just do things even though you said no? 🙂 But hopefully you will get to enjoy the dog, at least a little bit. I still can’t believe mom even went for it. Ha ha ha. I know how you feel about finding new pounds (weight). Ha ha. I really actually haven’t gained too much weight, I’m just really soft, and little bit squishy. But it’s okay. I don’t need to be worrying about that right now. I’ll just work out when I get home and have time. 🙂 Anyway, that’s really all. I hope your week is great! Love you.

Emmysaurus: “I smell cookies.”

Ha ha ha! I was just telling Sister Q. about that movie (Nacho Libre) the other day. It was sad though because I couldn’t remember some of the funny things he says. We will have to watch that movie when I get home, so I can remember the hilariousness of that movie. 🙂 🙂 Anyway, I’m glad you are enjoying your new dog. Once I get home, and get married, and all of that fun stuff, I am definitely going to be getting a dog for sure. Although, being on the mission makes you a little scared of dogs. The little ones always run at you and try to bite you. But you get used to it. After a couple times, you start to take off your backpack, so if they come at you, you can just whack them. 🙂 Ha ha ha. Anyway, I think that’s all. I love you. Bye. Peace and blessings!


Howzit-Elder Flexy!

Elder Flexy 16:4 -email-


this week was pretty good on tuesday Elder R. was sick. must have been something he ate but we worked hard after he got better. on saturday we tracted a new area knocked on fifty houses it was good we are just separating the jokers from those who are serious. but life is good companionship is good. we got transfer news and we are staying the same but next transfer Elder R. is out of here. you bought another dog? well thats cool i like her already she looks scruffy enough for me. i don’t like these short fur dogs. we are teaching a family with a sausage(wiener) dog. its pretty funny every time we come it acts all feisty but then he likes us again.

love you

Love Elder Flexy


i’m glad things are getting cooler cause its hotter than hades out here!!!!! but its ok i sweat so much i think i lose a pound a day. but the work is going well. We are trying to work with our recent convert named L. and he is getting exited to work with us. so it will be really good for him. well this week we have been meeting lots of people who only speak zulu so my zulu is getting pretty good. we will continue to work hard. love you

Love Elder Flexy


I’m glad your liking the new dog she looks very cute it will be cool to meet her when i get home. well i hope your bein a good girl none of these dumb things that i did. but keep your head up your doing fine.Love You

Love Elder Flexy

Sunday Best!


St. George, Utah, Temple. Gorgeous

Mose 1:39 

For behold, this is my work and my glory

to bring to pass the immortality

and eternal life of man.


President Gordon B. Hinckley said: “We are here to assist our Father in His work and His glory, ‘to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man’ (Moses 1:39). Your obligation is as serious in your sphere of responsibility as is my obligation in my sphere. No calling in this church is small or of little consequence. All of us in the pursuit of our duty touch the lives of others. To each of us in our respective responsibilities the Lord has said: … ‘In doing these things thou wilt do the greatest good unto thy fellow beings, and wilt promote the glory of him who is your Lord’ (D&C 81:4)” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1995, 94; or Ensign, May 1995, 71; see also D&C 81:5–6)

Hope your Sunday was the Best! Love, Joy



Family History Friday: Patronymic!

                                           My Dad! If we were using patronymic’s,                                                  I think my name would be Joy Emilsdatter! (Don’t quote me on that.)


Patronymic is the a name showing decendancy by adding a prefix or a suffix. It comes from the fathers name. For example,

Fitz, English (Norman); son of, comes before the name (Fitzgerald),

or Son, Swedish; son of, comes after the name (Swenson),

or Wiecz, wicz, Polish; son of (Karkowicz).

How does this help you do your Family History? It can give you great clues to help in the search for more family names. Knowing that you have ancestors with patronymic naming, also requires that you search more carefully. You will want to use other information to help in your search, for example: Where do they live? Is there a farm close to where they live? What was their occupation? What are their siblings names?

Family Search has great information about searching using patronymic’s. You can read more about it here! 

Happy Family History Friday! Love, Joy

I love Missionaries!

Me and a few of my friends had a great opportunity.

We were asked, because we have children serving missions, to serve lunch to the missionaries serving in our area.

It was so fun!!

The Elder on the front row, left, is from South Africa. That’s where Alex is! Isn’t that neat, that Alex got to go there and this Elder got to come here?

We met and talked to all of the missionaries. They were from everywhere.

The cute little short Sister in the middle reminded me of Kelsey. They are almost the same height.

I was thinking, about how someone where my kids are serving, is loving mine for me, just like we love these wonderful missionaries. We’re so glad they are here! It was a fun time!

Charlotte’s Web?

This amazing spider built this beautiful web in our yard, and when my darlin turned on the sprinkler, to water the lawn, it stopped the sprinkler from turning.

Now that’s a web.

I’ve always loved the show Charlotte’s Web. Charlotte saves the day, and the pig. In the movie everyone makes a big deal about the pig, when Charlotte is the one that is amazing. I love seeing a spider web…outside. If it is inside, not so much. They are builders and artists.

We have had two pet Black Widows at our home, at two different times. When all of our children were quite young, we found a Black Widow in the back yard and decided to observe her for a while. She lived at our home for long enough for us to see her attack and wrap up all kinds of insects. One time my darlin got the idea to put a wasp in the container that “Charlotte” (yes, her name was Charlotte) was kept in. It was quite a sight to see her crawl over fast and bite, or string, or whatever they do, to the wasp, then crawl back. She did this several times until the wasp was sedated, then she went over to it and wrapped it up. We all just looked at each other and said, “WOW!” After we had her for as long as we wanted to, we called the local nature center and asked them if they wanted her.

We were happy to find out that they did.

So we took Charlotte to her new home, feeling glad to have had the experience and happy others could enjoy her too.

Totally “Fort Worth” It!

Hermana Kelsey  9:1 -email-

Dear family,

Hola! Como estan? I hope everything is good with you. I am doing okay.

We had a cool thing happen this week. On Tuesday, we had Elder Baxter

from the seventy come to visit our mission, so we had a conference

with him. He was born in Scotland, but he grew up in Britian (Glasgow,

I think). He told us a lot of stuff about how we can improve ourselves

and be better missionaries. He talked really cool with his accent and

all that, and said some really funny phrases, one of them being,

“Well, that is a statement of the blatantly obvious” (like, “Thank you

for telling me something I don’t already know”). Ha ha. British people

are so funny. 🙂 It was also cool, because I saw some of the

missionaries that I worked with in Temple/Waco area. It was really


Anyway, so this week we have had quite a few little miracles. We have

found some really, really cool investigators. The only problem

is…they don’t live in our area/mission. One of them lives in Hurst,

so we’ll probably give her to the sisters that work in that area. And

the other two really cool people we met live in Dallas, but the sister

of the lady is in our ward, so we can probably still teach them when

they come to visit her. But they are all pretty cool, so we are

excited about that.

So it has been raining a lot lately, and sometimes in the middle of

the night, it wakes me up. Last week there was a night when it woke me

up at like 4 in the morning, and on Sunday, it woke me up at 2:40. It

is just really really loud, and once I’m awake, I see the lightning

even if my eyes are closed. It’s crazy here when it rains, which is

quite a bit lately.

So yesterday at church, we also had another miracle. So one of our

investigators, S., was planning on coming to church. We were

sitting in the chapel waiting for her to walk in and she texts us

saying that she can’t find the keys to the car. We texted her back,

and told her to pray to find them. She said she would do it. A few

minutes later she texted us again, and said that she had found them!

We were so excited. She was a little late, but she still got there in

time for the sacrament and all that, so that was really good. I know

that prayer truly does work, even for the little things in life. 🙂

And when she got there she was wearing a skirt!! She used to always

come in her pants, so that is a big step. You can always tell when

people are starting to change, because for the women it’s when they

start wearing skirts, and for men it’s when they start wearing button

up shirts, especially white ones. It’s a sign of conversion. She is

was cool, and she is getting baptized this Sunday!! 🙂 🙂 I’ll be

sending a picture of that probably next p-day. 🙂

Mom: Thank you so much for sending those clothes. It is starting to

cool off quite a bit (on and off) lately, so those clothes will be

really helpful.

Speaking of mission scriptures…I really wish I could change my

mission scripture. I mean the one I have is pretty good, but I have

found so many great scriptures about missionaries lately, and they are

all way better than the one I have. But it’s okay. Now I know. 🙂

Ha ha. Oh yeah I forgot to tell you something about Elder Baxter. He

was telling us about how we need to not go back to our old ways once

we get home from the mission. Then he was telling us about how if

President Sagers finds out that we aren’t active in the church or we

aren’t doing what we are supposed to, he is going to “find us and

spank us really hard.” President Sagers just laughed really, really

hard. It was hilarious. It reminded me of it when you said you were

going to spank Flexy. 🙂 (I told Flexy that I was going to spank him if he didn’t answer the questions I asked in my email)

Dad: I’m so glad you had a great weekend in St. George. That’s crazy

Kad-O is a deacon now.  I really miss going to the temple. We have a new rule that we can go to the temple once a month if we get a ride with members, and if we give up a p-day. But it’s really hard to do that, so I’m not

sure if I will. I think I will just wait until I get home, and then I

can go every week. 🙂 Well I think that’s all for now.

Well, I have to go now. I love you all. Tell Emily “hi” for me. I’ll

probably write her and Riley letters, but maybe not today. We still

have some stuff to do, so I might not have time. But Tell them I love

them too. Bye!

Love, Kelsey

Howzit-Elder Flexy!

Elder Flexy 16:3 -email-


this week was pretty tough we had a bunkionaire (meaning a ton of bunks.) but we just got back from a animal drive we a saw lots of zebras, giraffes, buffaloes, wildebeest, couple rhinos and a crocodile. but ya we had fun. sounds like sundays are going well in the ward here church doesn’t take place if we can’t get there. so i think this might be the hottest place i’ve ever been in my life and its humid to so it makes the work very interesting. but we will continue. well for the package i would appreciate a new pair of pants mine are pretty messed up preferably machine wash not dry clean.(they will be working pants so don’t pay to much for them and if i could get some two short sleeve white shirts that would be sweet and stick deodorant and whatever you think would be good. love you

Love Elder Flexy



sounds like you had a nice trip to St. George i’m glad Landog is getting back in the swing of life has he got post mission depression yet… thats what i’m scared of. but thats really cool. you heard they are remaking the tabenacle thing in provo into a temple thats gonna be cool we will sixteen temples in utah pretty sweet. but life is good and hot well love you

Love Elder Flexy

5ooth post!!

It has been 2 1/2 years! I am finally doing my 500th post! So I will reflect for a moment….I have done 101 posts on Family History, 6-10 posts on each of my children (but who’s counting), 70 posts on Elder Flexy-(it has been a year and 4 months since he left), 35 posts on Hermana Kelsey-(she’s been gone for 8 months), and 23 posts on my darling grandbaby, along with all of the “Beautiful Places” that I have posted about and the “Funny Things”, the “Bumper Stickers” and “Lessons.” You can’t forget my “Heroes”, and how every “Sunday” for quite a while has been the “Best”! This experience has been so fun and I am glad I started this journey. I have no plans to quit at anytime. So here are a few of my favorite posts from the last 500!!


Isn’t she darling!

Posted on  by joyful
Isn’t she darling!! What a fun girl.

She was putting her hands under the stream of water and every once in a while she would say “woohoo!” Being a grandma is the best. Happy Thursday everyone. Love, Joy


Bloom where you’re planted!

Posted on  by joyful

I often think of a time in my early 20′s when I was serving as a missionary in San Antonio, Texas. Like most volunteer situations, we were usually assigned where we would be serving. Needless to say, the area we ended up serving at any particular time would not necessarily be where WE would choose. The President of our mission used to say a quote that to this day is one of my favorites. Bloom where you’re planted! which to me meant grow and do the best you can -no matter what situation life finds you in. We don’t always enjoy any or all experiences while we’re going through them, but even the hardest experiences make us better than we would be without them. Sometimes the Master prunes us back and moves us to new soil, in a place He knows we might struggle, but He also knows we need to grow in. He knows us and has a plan for us, what He wants us to become. If we can learn to Bloom!, He will help us.
“If ye contuinue in the faith grounded and settled and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel.” -Colossians 1:23


Sweet Angel!

Posted on  by joyful


I’m pretty sure this is what an
looks like.
Who knew a person could love this much. I’ve heard it said that “the more we love, the greater our capacity to love is”. When I had my first child, I thought I could never love anyone as much as I loved him. Then I had another, and another, and one more still. And I realized, I loved them all more that words can say. How did this happen? Unless, my ability to love has grown. Now I’m a grandma and this little angel has come into my life. How could I possibly love another grandbaby as much as I love her? I can’t imagine it, but I know I will! Whenever that day comes.
Natasha = LOVE!
Love’s- nothing till you give it away, give it away, give it away……
You end up having more.
I love being a mom and a grandma!

My Heroes!

Posted on  by joyful

When I was 5 years old, my best friend lived next door. We lived in the country so friends were few and far between, as they say. I spent quite a bit of time alone, not wanting to be too much of a burden to my friend, but once in a while I would go next door and he would be in the back of his house taking care of something important I’m sure. I really had a great time with my friend, when he could play. Sometimes I’d be gone for hours and my mom would wonder where I was. She would eventually find me…out in the field, plowing with my best friend. In case you couldn’t tell by now, my best friend wasn’t another 5 year old. It was Mr. Chard, a grandpa type who, like I said lived next door to me. I used to stand on the fence and say, “Mr. Chard, can you play?“ Even now thinking about him I miss him and his sweet and gentle way. This was many years ago; you could trust your 5 year old daughter with a man like Mr. Chard. He wouldn’t hurt a fly. I remember he never had time to “play”, but I remember riding the tractor next to him and plowing the fields for hours. It’s too bad that the world has changed. I would have never had a best friend when I was five if I didn’t have Mr. Chard. He has been gone for years, but this little girl will never forget his kindness and love.

Lessons from the Mountain!

Posted on  by joyful

See this mountain…I have been on top of this mountain.
I love this mountain. It represents so much. From the time I was a small child till now, I have looked in awe at it’s majesty.
One lesson I learned from the mountain is this – you can do more than you think you can. We have untapped abilities that are only used when we really push ourselves. My sweetheart and I decided one year for our anniversary to climb the mountain. That was about ten years ago. It was going to be a testimony to our marriage and the work and effort that got us to that point in our marriage. We started at about 8:00 am. We had a great time talking and enjoying each others company. We talked about our kids, our life together so far, our goals and dreams, and of course we talked about how much we loved each other. As the time went on the trail became steeper. There were many switch backs. There were also beautiful views and flowers along the trail. We had not prepared at all for this hike. No walking or special training to build endurance. We just went for it. I remember saying to my darlin, “Do you think I can do it?” and he would say, “YES! you can”. After 7 hours of hiking we reached the top. I was exhausted, and Brett was tired. Remember, we have to get back down. Some where in the middle of the hike I remember thinking, this is probably the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I had given birth to 4 children and had gall bladder surgery, I was still thinking this is probably the hardest thing I’ve ever done. We hiked down for 5 more hours, using different muscles than we used going up. Toward the end of the hike we both really had to concentrate to put one foot in front of the other. It was more quiet than the hike up, because we were saving our energy for hiking down. Finally we made it. We were so sore, I mean soooo soorree!!! I couldn’t even look at the mountain for months without shedding a few tears. But I did it! I didn’t know I could. Now I know, I CAN do hard things. It takes alot of effort, but I can do what ever I need to or want to do in life.You can too!
(Oh, by the way the hike was 16.o5 miles)


A little motivation is a good thing.

Posted on  by joyful

 Have you ever noticed that sometimes the best motivation for a needed change in our lives is rarely fun or pleasant. When I was tiny (yes, I remember being tiny), about the time I was potty trained, I would go potty in the middle of the night and was either too scared or too tired to go back to bed, so I developed a habit of falling asleep on the rug in front of the sink. Sometimes I slept there the rest of the night. Sometimes I got cold and went back to bed.

When I was five, we moved to a very small farm house in the country while my Daddy was building our new home. Before we could even move into the farm house, a lot of cleaning up had to take place. In fact, the home had basically been abandoned and left empty for quite some time before we moved in. Mom and Dad had 5 kids at the time, and there was only one bedroom in the house. All of us kids slept in the one room. My three older brothers slept in a full bed, and I slept on an old army cot next to the crib where my baby brother slept. Mom and Dad slept on a hide-a-bed in the living room. Sometime in the moving process it was mentioned that there “sure were a lot of mice around”. This, of course, was a concern to me, because I thought they were scary. In the back part of the house was a small wash/storage room. Mom would keep her canning jars there, along with the washer and dryer. The first time I walked back in that room to get something I heard many of the canning jars shaking and rattling. I realized that the mice (not mouse) were running through the jars to escape. Ok, so now we are at the motivation part of the story. I don’t think I ever fell asleep on the rug in front of the sink ever again. I avoided the trip to the bathroom in the night time, all together. I was so good at going potty before bed and staying in bed. I became a parents dream.
I know, I know -he’s darling!!!
Just not in my house!

Happy, Happy 100th POST!!! 100 WAYS TO CHOOSE JOY!!!

Posted on  by joyful


100 ways to choose JOY!
(in no particular order);)
100-go for a walk
99-cuddle your sweetheart
98-jump on a trampoline
97-research your family tree
96-go for a drive
95-clean a closet
94-serve dinner at a shelter
93-play scrabble
92-cuddle a sleeping baby
91-watch “The Princess Bride”
90-read a good book
89-make a new friend
88-make treats for your neighbor
87-do some ironing
86-take a long hot shower
85-lay on the grass and watch the clouds
84-watch planes take off and land
83- give the dog a bath
82-call an old friend
81-look at your eyes in the mirror
80-go to a museum
79-let go of things you can’t
 do anything about
78-paint your nails
77-make play dough for the kids and play with them
76-sing a song at the top of your lungs
75-do the dishes by hand
74-finish a project
73-practice saying “I love you” to the mirror
72-take a nap
71-start a blog
70-clean out your purse
69-write a letter
68-count your blessings
67-read to a small child
66-braid someone’s hair
65-sit in a park and just watch
64-buy flowers for yourself
63-plan your dream house or your mansion in heaven
62-try cooking something new
61-go for a hike
60-kiss someone you love
58-go on a picnic
57-set some goals
56-write a special memory for your posterity
55-notice the little things
54-plant a tree
53-learn a language
52-sit in the sunshine
51-pray daily
50-have a song in your heart
49-visit a historical sight
48-one word: “chocolate”
47-visit a rest home
46-don’t JUDGE
45-give a massage
44-stand for right
43-believe in God
42-listen to beautiful music
41-play with someone’s hair
40-go for a run
39-balance your checkbook
38-dust your home
37-go to a farm when the baby animals are being born
36-read about great people
35-donate to a charity
33-drink clean water
32-use the toilet
31-”do unto others…”
30-share dinner with friends
29-shampoo, massage your scalp
28-clean up someone else’s mess, without anyone seeing you
27-take pictures
26-get a pedicure
25-”if you can’t say somethin’ nice,
don’t say nothin’ at all”
24-get things done (no moping)
23-have a candlelight dinner
22-start a rock collection
20-listen more
19-count the stars
18-watch ants
17-don’t compare your worst with someone else’s best
16-chew bubble gum and blow bubbles
15-be grateful
13-feed the birds
12-create something from something else
10-ride a horse
9-smell brownies
8-Listen to your heart
7-tend children for a tired momma
6-jump a rope
5-lotion your whole body
4-close your eyes and feel the breeze
3-take a class
2-fold laundry
1-Choose it! choose JOY!!!!
Thanks for reading and spending the last 100 posts with me!
 Love, Joy

This seat is saved!!

Posted on  by joyful
So darling!!!!!
I had to take this picture!
My kids have sat in the same spot in our BMW (basic mormon wagon) for as long as I can remember. We’re not all in the car always at the same time, but when we are this is where my children sit. In these exact spots. I didn’t assign them places, they decided where they wanted to sit and it’s been that way ever since. I mean we’re talking years and years!
 This was our last family day, before Riley left, I had to snap a pic.
I love my children. I’m so proud of the people they have become and are becoming.  
Thanks for reading!! Love, Joy

Sunday Best!

Brett with the scouts!

“Love is one of the chief characteristics of Deity, and ought to be manifested by those who aspire to be the sons of God. A man filled with the love of God, is not content with blessing his family alone, but ranges through the world, anxious to bless the whole human race…and for so doing, I pray that heaven’s choicest blessings may rest upon you.” -Joseph Smith

Hope your Sunday was the Best! Love, Joy