Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A Cup Of Living Water Today ~

Yesterday for various reasons, I had my three wonderful daughters call me. Each had their own concerns and life events to share. I know that they are dear daughters of our Heavenly Father and I have the privilege of being their earthly Mother. The moments of conversation were like manna to my soul. My youngest daughter was struggling with a sad moment in her life and we talked of faith, trust, the will of the Father and clinging to her testimony.  It is always a joy to hear from your children as they express their testimonies of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and their faith in him. I also feel blessed that I have three wonderful son's, son in laws and three daughter in laws.
I truly miss all of my children, grandchildren. We see our three sons and their families  fairly often. However, all three of our daughters live much further a way. This past year we were able to attend the baptisms of four of our granddaughters in Idaho, Missouri and Washington. Tomorrow we are leaving to attend the baptism for our granddaughter that lives in South Dakota.
Since moving back to Utah, most of my friends have all of their children near and I feel they are so blessed. I am always so excited to go and be with my children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.They truly bring great happiness into my life.
After these phone calls I started to reflect on some of my feelings about myself as a mother. I do know that I wasn't the best of mothers. I made many mistakes and wish that I had managed events differently. When our children where young, we had many struggles. We lived in Nevada for 7 years and during that time I needed to supplement our income. We had lost a home and my husband his job and thus we moved to Nevada for a new job. These years are what I call our Wilderness years.  We were truly out in the temporal desert; having temporal difficulties.There was so many great lessons that we learned as we struggled through those years. I regret  that I needed to work at the time. My children were pre-teen and teenagers; so it was a rough era for raising our children. I also had health issues which didn't help our situation. Funds were low so we weren't able to take fun family vacations or do very many other family activities. Taking six children to any event that cost money was all most non existent. Our day to day existence was trying. We clung to our faith and moved forward but in the meantime there were many parenting issues and it was hard.
Through it all I do feel deep gratitude for each of my children. They remained strong and true to our faith regardless of our lack of time together and parenting minutes. We worked hard to follow the Prophet in his counsel on raising children; but we still fell short in many ways.I know that I am not alone in feeling sad about not having the ideal family times. For many years I didn't really enjoy Mother's Day. Now in this age I can see things as they were in a different perspective. 
After having some of these thoughts and memories flow into my mind; I decided to pray for some comfort today. I always pray everyday to be a better mother, grandmother and great grandmother.
I have been reading a book entitled; "Doing What We Came To Do - Living A Life Of Love" by Ardeth G. Kapp. So today as I was reading this book by Ardeth Kapp; my prayers were answered. She told of one experience with her own mother that made all the difference in my feelings today. Here are Sister Kapp's thoughts: "The last Mother's Day before my mom passed away, as I was pushing her in her wheelchair into the chapel, she whispered, half to herself but loud enough for me to hear, "I never liked Mother's Day. It always reminds me of all the things I didn't do as a mother." Wanting to ease her mind, I leaned over and whispered, "Mom, I don't think you did so badly." She smiled.
So I will smile knowing that I did the best I could do in the circumstances that we were in. As parents we tried to do what we knew was right at the time. We stayed true to our beliefs and had many spiritual experiences also during our wilderness journey in Nevada.
 In the mist of our parenting years, we do receive great joy into our lives each time we are with our children. We schedule reunions every two years in an attempt to keep our family bonds strong. Each of our children are dear to us, our love for them is infinite and the joy they all bring into our lives is priceless. 
Some thoughts taken from the Book entitled: Temple Worship - 20 Truths That Will Bless Your Life by Andrew C. Skinner; I have paraphrased a couple of thoughts from him: 
As members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints we believe in Eternal families. We believe our happiness in the life to come will be eternal because the family continues" He then quoted President Joseph Fielding Smith as he taught great truths about the nature of families. President Smith said: "Not only was marriage instituted by the Lord to endure eternally, but it also naturally follows that the same is true of the family. ...Could it ever be heaven without family? No, the family is the unit in the Kingdom of God...We believe that the family will go on. I get a great deal of comfort out of the thought that if I am faithful and worthy of an exaltation, my father will be my father, and I will be subject to him as his son through all eternity; that I will recognize and know my mother and she will be my mother in all eternity; and my brothers and sisters will be my brothers and sisters for all eternity; and that my children and my wife will be mine in eternity. I don't know how some other people feel, but that is a glorious thought to me.

I think this is such a lovely thought. So I will tell all my children, grandchildren and great grandchildren that we must love one another, cling to our faith, press forward with a steadfastness in Christ and endure the trials of life. I know the promise is true that if they will nurture those loving relationships with in their own families and also with their siblings they will  feel the arms of the Savior encircle them within the arms of his love; I know this to be true. My pleading prayer was answered as my cup of Living Water was filled today.

PS. My sweet youngest daughter had a miscarriage last week. She is such a faithful, loving young woman. The past two years she has had many health issues and has so wanted to have another baby. She has been so sad about this; but recognizes that she needs to accept God's will for her. She wrote a very lovely post on her feelings, you can read it here:

Friday, March 23, 2012

A Five Minute Moment ~

Around here we write for five minutes flat on Fridays.
We finger paint with words. We try to remember what it was like to just write without worrying if it’s just right or not.
Want to play Five Minute Friday? It’s easy!

1. Write for 5 minutes flat – no editing, no over thinking, no backtracking
2. Link back here and invite others to join in. http://thegypsymama.com/2012/03/five-minute-friday-
3. Meet & encourage someone who linked up before you.

OK, are you ready? Give us your best five minutes on:Loud

OK, I have five minutes to tell you what is on my mind right now. I have been hurrying and scurrying all day long and now I don't have time to do a post. I wanted to do one of the Simple Woman's Daybook post because I like to do those once in a while. Perhaps, I will try doing this instead. However, I tend to be very wordy so I don't know if this can work for me. This evening  I have been busy making up my temple shift assignments for the 10 new sisters I am training. I got them all put together and forgot one of the sisters so that put a kink in the plan. Tomorrow I start our shift at 3:30 am. I want to wear my pedometer to see how many steps I take. I will probably not sit much at all. I have to be at certain areas at different times and on top of that I always meet with each of the sisters I am working with for 10 to 20 minutes to see how they are doing. Our shift ends at 11 am and I enjoy the moments of the day. I love the work and the sisters I am working with so I am always happy being in the temple; doing the Lord's work. I also may be losing weight by all the walking; that could be a plus. The most important element is that I don't feel sleepy all morning because I am too busy. I hate that feeling of being so tired that I  can't hardly stand it. Well, I am looking forward to a good nights sleep. Probably not enough hours but I will take what I can get. So good night to all of my wonderful Blogging friends. I love you much!
PS.Oops, I think I was suppose to write about the word loud. So this is my loud and noisy day.

Monday, March 19, 2012

What Would You Do Different? ~

Why would l want a headache?? I know that if I cry a lot I will have a headache sometime around 3 am. So why in the world would one want to cause a headache. I will tell you why. I have been pondering on what I would change in my life and if I could start over what would I do different? In truth there is not much that I would change. I have enjoyed my life. I would want the same parents and siblings.

I would want my same husband, children and posterity.

I am happy with the path I have taken. I liked being a daughter, sister, girlfriend, wife, mother, grandmother, and great grandmother. I liked the career of nursing that I chose and the opportunities I had while working. I have loved all of the callings in the church that I have been given. Some of the callings have been difficult but good learning experiences and many of them have brought me great joy.
There are just a few things I would have done different. I would have perhaps had more children. I feel sad that I didn't have one more. However, my health wasn't good at the time I  wanted another child. I felt it wasn't wise to have another baby.
 I would have liked to have been a more patient mother. Perhaps laughed more and raised my voice less. However, the older and wiser I became the better I was at laughing through many parenting experiences. I loved being an imperfect mother and loved those children of mine with all of my heart and soul. Now I can enjoy my grandchildren and great grandchildren more because I have more patience and wisdom.
Well back to the tears shed today. I got to thinking about my parents. My father passed away in October of 2001 and my dear mother passed away in July of 2006.

My oldest brother passed away in July of 2010. I miss them all so much. Just thinking about them started my tears.

 Here are a few more things I would do different. When I first got married we lived near both our parents. I was very close to my mother and would call her every day. She loved my dear husband so much. So if I ever complained about him she would take his side. I loved her for that. My mother was so good to take the children when needed as were my husband's parents. Both of our parents really enjoyed our first two sons.  When my husband graduated from college we moved to California. In those days  you had to pay for every minute of a telephone call; so that limited the times that we could call one another. The daily telephone calls ended and I really missed that. I did write them letters once in a while but not often. My mother often wrote me notes. We didn't communicate often with his parents either. I had 4 more children over the next 6 years. Life was very busy. During those years the only time we saw our parents was when we made a trip back home which wasn't often. We didn't take very many family vacations due to money, time, old cars and etc.
 My parents always came for at least a week to help us when I had a new baby. Those were treasured visits with wonderful memories. My mother was so good to help. When I had my last baby she ask me if I was going to have anymore because she felt to old to do this again. Now I am at the same age she was and I feel the same; I feel to old. I regret that I didn't have more time with my parents. I wish we could have talked more often, wrote more frequently and visit more times. We didn't have text messaging, cell phones, and email so communication was harder. I am so happy we can communicate better with the technology of today. So enjoy your parents now and communicate more.
 Next regret is our siblings. On both sides of our families we have a total of 10 siblings. Through the years we didn't communicate often at all with our brothers and sisters. It would be weeks before we would hear that they had a new baby arrive or other news.We didn't reach out to them and we didn't share our lives with one another. I think that is so sad. Even now we live in the same city as many of my husband's siblings and we only manage to get together a couple of times a year.
 We have each lost our oldest sibling. I did get closer to my oldest brother in the last few years of our parents lives. I also reconnected with my other brother during those later years. However, we still  don't see or communicate very often with each other.I know that it is very important for us to become closer to our remaining siblings and their families. I have hopes that our family can stay closer and give our grandchildren a chance to know their cousins better than we did. Perhaps with some work we can solidify our own families and extended families.
So being in this reflective mood I decided it was time for me to listen to a tape that my Dad made for my Mom for her birthday in 1996. I have been wanting to listen to it for 10 years but knew that it was going to be an emotional moment for me and it was. I miss my Daddy and Mommy. My Dad loved to sing and dance. 

I remember so many love songs that he would sing like; "My Wild Irish Rose", "Always", and other ones. He  made this tape of sweet love songs and thoughts for my mother's just for her. One was a song he wrote for her.This tape is a treasure and that is exactly why I will have a headache at 3 am. I will enjoy this headache because I loved listening and crying to every song he sang. I hadn't  heard my Dad's voice for a very long time. So I sat back and enjoyed this bereaving moment.
Just remember treasure every moment you have with your parents, siblings and extended family. I know that we will one day see those who have passed on; because I believe in Eternal Families.  Meanwhile, enjoy the sweet minutes you have with your parents and families now.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

" Just Look Up" ~

Is it the weather? Is it the world Issues? Is it Politics? Is it your job? Is it your church calling? Is it family struggles? Do you have marriage problems? Is it money concerns? Is it health issues? Are you bored? Are you fearful? Are you concerned? Are you unhappy? The list could go on. Throughout my life there have been many struggles. I think I can safely say that we all have adversity in our lives. I believe and have found that there is always purpose in our difficulties.
Here is just a short list of different painful moments I have had through my life; along with current  moments of concern.
My husband and I have both had some serious health issues. I was diagnosed with Sarcoid tumors in my lungs; when I was just a young mother. I had a priesthood blessing and have been in remission for many years. Later on I had a pituitary tumor that has been controlled by medications. I was very ill for a long time with a disease that wasn't totally diagnosed due to going into remission.  My husband had a heart attack at the age of 45. He had just received a promotion and we were moving from  Nevada to Washington when this occurred. We had to change a lot of our plans. The next year he had open heart surgery; so this was a rough time for us. He has lost jobs four times and we have had to relocate. We have lived in 4 states and moved several times within those areas.  We lost a home and I had to go back to work for a while to earn money to buy a home again.  We have had many financial reversals through the years.  We have had stressful jobs.We have 6 children so there were various difficulties with our children and now with our grandchildren. We have both lost our parents and one of our siblings. We have had children with health concerns too; along with two granddaughters who have had serious health battles.
OK, that was enough of that. Basically, I am an optimistic personality but I do have my moments of feeling down. I have noticed lately that weather can affect my moods; gray days I am not as motivated. I have been somewhat stressed over the political atmosphere in our nation. I have been feeling sad about some family struggles that we have been having. I want everyone in our family to love one another, forgive one another and sometimes that just doesn't happen. I have felt sad because two of my close friends are struggling with cancer. As Inner City missionaries we find the poverty throughout the inner city areas is  fairly prevalent and I feel sad for them all. Some are in their dire circumstances due to poor judgement, others have always lived in poverty. Then a few are there because of no fault of their own. Many of these individuals don't know how to improve their circumstances. Sometimes I just wish we could take them home and help them change their lives; but that is not the process. 
 I find that often we sometimes judge another as having a perfect life. However, I don't believe it is possible in our fallen world to have the so called "perfect life". I do believe that we can have faith enough to go through life experiences because this is where we learn the most about ourselves. Trials can bring great blessings. As I reflect upon my life; I can say I have been richly blessed with trials and blessings. I have learned much.
On Monday, I had a blue day.  When I get in these moods; I usually try to pray it away. In my prayers I asked for some help with some of my current problems and feelings. Often times when I do this I will find the answer while reading my scriptures. I have also been trying to read a conference message each day and on this particular day the talk was "It is Better To Look Up" by Elder Carl B. Cook. (The Ensign, November 2011 pg. 33-35.) I know this wasn't a coincident. As I read this message my heart was touched, the spirit was felt and I was able to face the day with a better attitude of optimism.
I thought I would share a few thoughts from this message.
Elder Cook said the following: "At the end of a particularly tiring day toward the end of my first week as a General Authority, my briefcase was overloaded and my mind was preoccupied with the question “How can I possibly do this?” I left the office of the Seventy and entered the elevator of the Church Administration Building. As the elevator descended, my head was down and I stared blankly at the floor.The door opened and someone entered, but I didn’t look up. As the door closed, I heard someone ask, “What are you looking at down there?” I recognized that voice—it was President Thomas S. Monson.

I quickly looked up and responded, “Oh, nothing.” (I’m sure that clever response inspired confidence in my abilities!)
But he had seen my subdued countenance and my heavy briefcase. He smiled and lovingly suggested, while pointing heavenward, “It is better to look up!” As we traveled down one more level, he cheerfully explained that he was on his way to the temple. When he bid me farewell, his parting glance spoke again to my heart, “Now, remember, it is better to look up.”
I marvel at the optimistic attitude of our dear prophet. I can't imagine that his life is easy. He is today's Prophet to the world. The world is in turmoil. The membership of our church is over 14 million and the burden's of the his office are heavy.  
Another thought from Elder Cook:" Experience has taught me that if we, like President Monson, exercise our faith and look to God for help, we will not be overwhelmed with the burdens of life. We will not feel incapable of doing what we are called to do or need to do. We will be strengthened, and our lives will be filled with peace and joy.3 We will come to realize that most of what we worry about is not of eternal significance—and if it is, the Lord will help us. But we must have the faith to look up and the courage to follow His direction...."
"President Monson's encouragement to look up is a metaphor for remembering Christ. . As we remember Him and trust in His power, we receive strength through His Atonement. It is the means whereby we can be relieved of our anxieties, our burdens, and our suffering. It is the means whereby we can be forgiven and healed from the pain of our sins. It is the means whereby we can receive the faith and strength to endure all things.
Elder Cook told of an experience where a Stake Relief Society President invited everyone at a Stake Meeting to go outside and each of the sisters were given a helium balloon. "She explained that our balloon represented whatever burden, trial, or hardship was holding us back in our lives. On the count of three, we released our balloons, or our “burdens.” As we looked up and watched our burdens float away, there was an audible “Ahhhh.” That simple act of releasing our balloons provided a marvelous reminder of the indescribable joy that comes from looking up and thinking of Christ."

Elder Cook expressed the following thought: "In order to be guided in life’s journey and have the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost, we must have a “hearing ear” and a “seeing eye,” both directed upward.11 We must act on the direction we receive. We must look up and step up. And as we do, I know we will cheer up, for God wants us to be happy."
So my plan for this week is too "Look Up"; perhaps I will send a balloon off representing all of my burdens for this week and put my faith in Christ.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

"In The Arms Of Our Savior's Forgivness" ~

I have been pondering for sometime thoughts on forgiveness. Through the years I have had many experiences with the word "Forgiveness". Sometimes I have been the one in need of forgiveness for a moment of bad judgement or doing something that would offend my Heavenly Father. However, often it has been an experience where I have needed to forgive another. Then there is another hard step in forgiving oneself. 
A few years ago I had a sweet gentle sister in our church come to me offended over a statement that I had made carelessly about a situation in our church. At first I was shocked. I thought that the concern was rather silly. However, as I sat with her and we went through this event; I discovered that I had indeed said something that deeply hurt her. I was devastated that I had caused her any concern at all. I begged for forgiveness and cried as I tried to explain my position. As we left one another, we hugged and I felt she had forgiven me. I knelt in prayer and asked my Heavenly Father to forgive me, also. I couldn't bare the thought that I had hurt another soul. For a time this incident became a moment to reflect upon  other times when I may have been unkind. After a time, I realized that it was important that I replay these  unforgiving scenes of my life but also not to linger there.
Elder Neal A. Maxwell counseled: "Some of us who would not chastise a neighbor for his frailties have a field day with our own. We should, of course, learn from our mistakes, but without forever studying the instant replays as if there were the game of life itself."
We are required to forgive others and also to forgive ourselves.
In D&C 64:10 the Lord does command us to forgive: "I the Lord, will forgive whom I will forgive, but of you it is required to forgive all men.
I have thought deeply about the following scripture found in 3 Nephi 12:23-24.  "If ye shall come unto me or shall desire to come unto me, and rememberest that thy brother hath aught against thee -go thy way unto thy brother, and first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come unto me with full purpose of heart, and I will receive you. What a beautiful thought that the Savior will welcome us into the his arms of forgiveness. Elder H. Burke Peterson of the Presiding Bishopric said: " No one can be classed as a true follower of the Savior who is not in the process of removing from his heart and mind every feeling of ill will, bitterness, hatred, envy, or jealousy toward another." (Ensign, November 1983, p. 60).
The Savior warned that "He that forgiveth not his brother his trespasses standeth condemned before the Lord; for there remaineth in him the greater sin." (D&C 64:9)
Elder Theodore M Burton said; "I take that to mean it is a greater sin to refuse to forgive a person than it is to commit the sin for which that person was disfellow-shipped or excommunicated."( Ensign, May 1983, p.72.)
I have found that when you have an unforgiving attitude and hold out bitter feelings towards another we end up hurting ourselves more. Karen Burton Mains stated the following in a book entitled, The Key To a Loving Heart: " When our grievance grows to hatred, we become slaves of the very persons we hate. We are bound to them with chains that leave us no peace. Waking, we are haunted by their presence. Our sleeping is shadowed by their deeds. Our memories are clouded by their wrongdoing. Their present actions grind and gore us. We have allowed hatred to become our incarceration."
Elder H. Burke Peterson warned, "The longer the poison of resentment and unforgiveness stays in a body, the greater and longer lasting is it's destructive effect. As long as we blame others for our condition or circumstance and build a wall of self-justiffication around ourselves, our strength will diminish and our power and ability to rise about our situation will fade away. The poison of revenge, or of unforgiving thoughts or attitudes, unless removed, will destroy the soul in which is it is harbored." (Ensign, Novemeber 1983, p. 59.)
In the Book entitled: "In The Arms of His Love"; Steven A. Cramer stated the folowing: "Every person in this planet is capable of weakness and sin. Those who have injured us are vulnerable, imperfect human beings just as we are. God does not demand perfection of us and we have no right to demand perfection of those who hurt us. Remembering this will help us to separate the offense from the offender. It is also helpful to view those who repeatedly hurt us as being handicapped. Wouldn't it be easier to forgive them for hurting us if they were physically crippled or blind? Perhaps they are blind emotionally. Perhaps they can't see how they hurt others. Perhaps, because of unfortunate circumstances in their past, they just don't know any other way of relating to you. For all we know, their unacceptable behavior may be nothing more than a reflection of the way they were injured in  their youth. If we could see into thier hearts as God can, we would understand their deviant behavior and not condemn them for it.")
Sherrie Johnson said, "Only by forgiving and forgetting, letting go of our bitterness and hurt, do we free ourselves to progress. Change of any kind is difficult, but forgiving and forgetting is perhaps the hardest kind of change. This change is beyond your self, but is attainable when you seek and accept the help of Heavenly Father. He can give you the strength you lack. " (Ensign, January 1985, p. 60.)
Remember the one who holds us; paid the price for all sin in the Garden of Gethsemane.

Yes, forgiving others and ourselves is not an easy task. It may be one of the hardest things Christ has asked you to do. However, he will be there to help us. He will welcome us back into his loving arms of forgiveness.

An after thought - Often times when I have a difficult time thinking of something I would like to write a post about; I pray. This is where I was led today.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

A Favorite Of Mine Is Number Thirteen ~ We Believe!

In our faith we have Thirteen Articles of Faith. This is what we believe as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  I love article of faith thirteen.This is a favorite because it describes the characteristics of one who believes in and follows our Savior Jesus Christ.
"We believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to all men; indeed, we may say that we follow the admonition of Paul - We believe all things, we hope all things, we have endured many things, and hope to be able to endure all things. If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things.
In an article in the Liahona Jan. 2011, the Young Women General Presidency wrote an article entitled; "We Believe!" Here are a few thoughts from this article.
"We believe that one virtuous young woman, led by the Spirit, can change the world". I would add not only one young woman but one young man too and of course all of us combined. We could have a deep impact upon this world.
When Joseph Smith wrote the thirteenth article of faith, he expressed everything we can and must seek and become as believers. Joseph Smith knew that we must believe in standards and values and seek after these things in order to have the power and strength of the Holy Ghost. He knew we would need to follow the Savior in word and deed. He knew that doing this would prepare us to be worthy of the blessings of the temple.
 As I observe the young people today; many are leading out in being examples of these characteristics. They are strong and true in the faith. They are living virtuous lives and preparing for the temple. They are true believers in being "virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy."
We live in a society today that is dwindling in unbelief. In school halls you will find bad behaviors such as crude language, immodest dress, poor sportsmanship and dishonestity in the classrooms. However, this behavior is not limited to the youth in fact the adults are even worse. The workplace and everywhere we turn we find ourselves subject to bad behaviors.
As a mother, grandmother and great grandmother I desire to be an example of these virtues. It is our responsibility to live these values and teach them to our posterity. 
In a New Era Article in June of 2001 entitled:  "Making A Mighty Change" ; Elder Marlin K. Jensen challenges us to do the following:
"I'm going to ask you to participate in a brief experiment. Start by standing in front of a mirror and reciting out loud to yourself the 13th Article of Faith. You may remember it is the longest and last article you memorized as you were preparing to advance from Primary.
Analyze your feelings and mannerisms as you voice the words "We believe in being honest, true, chaste"; "we hope all things"; "we seek after these things"; etc.
Do you feel a little removed or distant from the expression of belief being made? Do the words seem to apply more to we than to me? Do they possibly convey a group but not a strong individual sense of conviction?
Now repeat Article 13 again. But this time, personalize it by substituting and emphasizing the pronoun I whever the pronoun we appears. Say the words slowly and thoughtfully: "I believe in being honest, true, chaste"; "I follow the admonition of Paul"; "I have endured many things'; etc. Do you detect a difference? Does it feel more like a part of you, something you truly accept and are personally committed too."
I am going to take this challenge. I am going to memorize again this wonderful Article of Faith and make it my own. I want to be a better follower of Jesus Christ. Will you take this challenge too?

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Yes, "All Dogs Do Go To Heaven"~

Our Sweet Loving Suzy sometimes called Suesue or Suzycue

Late Tuesday evening our sweet little dog Suzy was having difficulty breathing. We took her to a Pet Emergency room where they kept her there for further tests. After tests yesterday it was found that she had pulmonary edema with right sided heart failure. We went into the pet hospital where we held her in our arms as she took her last breath. She was brought home and buried in the strawberry patch where she loved to lay. She was a gentle sweet little dog and we will miss her so much. Sammy our other dog keeps looking around for her; they were very good friends as well.
In the year 2008 we first lost our cat of 18 years named Willie. Then our sweet Maltese Dog named Dollie was hit by a car in front of our house that year. She died instantly.This affected me profoundly at the time because she was my little dog. She was sweet natured and loving. I said at that time that I didn't want to feel that pain again. More of the story of Willie and Dollie can be found here; The Miracle of the Lilac Bush. We were blessed in December that year with another puppy, a Shih Tzu that we named Sammy. He was free and we couldn't turn him down. He has been such a character and bonded immediately with my husband. Later on due to him being so rambunctious we decided to get him a companion dog. We thought at the time if he had a friend he might calm down a bit. We found in the paper a breeder who was selling some puppies. When we went to see about this, we found Suzy. We were told at that time that she was around 5 years old. She had been one of their breeder dogs. When we brought her home; Sammy was curious at first but soon they became friends. 
Over the next few weeks we began to believe that she had been part of a puppy mill. She must have given birth to many litters. She seemed older than her years. We were told by the Veterinarian yesterday that she was probably over 10 years old. Although she didn't play a lot. She liked to be held and always sat with me in my chair when we were watching TV or just relaxing.
She loved to go outside with Sammy and recently he has been very protective of her. If she was left outside; he would come into the study where my husband works and whine. When my husband would follow him he would go to the door and scratch and there was Suzy. We could also send him outside to bring her back in. It was so cute. She had lost her hearing and was becoming blind.
Yesterday was a rough day and we are grieving and that is important. She has a place in our hearts and we will miss her.
This is sad Sammy ~

A question has been raised --Can animals be with their owners in the hereafter? I believe that they can. We believe in an afterlife for all mankind as well animals. Animals will be resurrected and receive Salvation automatically through the atonement of Christ. Here are a few bits of doctrine on this matter. "The animals will be resurrected and placed in their appropriate places in Heaven. As the fall of Adam affected animals, so also through the atonement will animals be heirs of salvation in their respective spheres". (Sacred Truths of the D&C Vol. II, p. 69.)
Elder Orson F. Whitney an early day Apostle stated: " Emotional ties my be honored and family pets may well be restored to their owners in the resurrection. He wrote that the Prophet Joseph Smith expected to have his favorite horse in eternity. (Improvement Era, Aug. 1927, p. 85.)
Yes, I do believe that all dogs go to Heaven and that we will someday reunite with our precious pets. 


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