Friday, July 6, 2012

Rembering to Say "Thank You"

The above file is a freebie for ya--I made it and you can use it how you see fit!  For those of you who don't know what it is, it's a digital stamp sentiment and you can use it with photo editing software on digital artwork or print it out and use it on a paper crafting project as well!  It's a little thank you for coming to my blog today! :)

Well, I am afraid I should've looked ahead as some of my comments from last week's Primary helps are covered in this lesson as well! Oops!  Well, let's just start off with how I'll teach the lesson and maybe something new will pop into my head! :)

Primary 2: Lesson 25: Remember to Say Thank You

*Instead of playing the "telephone" game as an attention activity, we will play hangman on the board.  This will help me to see which children know their letters in a non-threatening way and will also help me know which children can read well.  I do know my good readers, etc., but this is another way to see if they can put letters into context to create words! :)  Yes.  I work in the public school system.  How'd you know?!

*I'll use my 10 figures from last week's helps to see who remembers the story of the 10 lepers by asking each child to come forward and hand me the right amount of figures that remembered to say thank you to Christ for His service.  We did this last week, so we'll see what they remember!

*I will use the simple drawings in my helps instead of drawing on the board...I've found that the children like pictures they can see up close better and this way I can use each picture at different times.  I won't have to erase them and hope they remember, either.  If we have time at the end of the lesson, I can see if they can retell the story, too!  Always be prepared for short lessons that don't take all the time!

*We will be making thank you cards for members of the ward that help our class.  Each child will make one, and we will use them to give out to those members.  Each child will sign each card and we will take them to some of the members if we have time!

*I will send home about 3-5 small slips of paper that say "Thank You!"  with each child and encourage them to use them during the week when someone does something nice for them.

*I will be using my helps for Enrichment Activity 5 as a just in case thing.

*I will be sending thank you cards to each of my kids this week...and missing you cards to those who aren't there.  I make my own cards, but I have also included THIS DIGITAL CARD FRONT that you can use and print out!

Find the lesson helps for this week HERE--I hope they can help you out!!!

Okay, so I decided to just expand on something that I wrote last week.  The topic of this week's "words of wisdom" will be "Giving Thanks for ALL Things."  It's basically a very personal experience that has taught me to be grateful for all I have.  So, if all you came for was the helps, feel free to stop reading! ;)

My husband and I married pretty young.  He had been off of his mission for less than a year and I was barely 20.  We had all sorts of fabulous hopes, plans, and dreams for the future.  One of these was to have a large family of 6 children or maybe more.  We decided to wait a year to start our family as we were both in school and he was almost done with his associates degree.  After a year was over, I stopped taking my birth control and we started to try to get pregnant.  I wasn't too concerned when it didn't happen.  I actually wasn't concerned that we weren't pregnant until my younger sister got pregnant with their first child.  This was three years into the trying.  I had always just felt that if it was right, it would happen!  I didn't questions why we weren't getting pregnant, but when my YOUNGER sister got pregnant, I was devastated.

I guess that I had been in the denial state of grief.  I had always had issues through my teenage years and was told that having children might be a problem for me.  But I had faith that Heavenly Father would grant my desires--they were righteous after all!  So, I was in denial for the first four years of our marriage.  And then, like I said my YOUNGER sister got pregnant.  Right on schedule for them.  How very nice...NOT.

I was incredibly angry with God.  It was off and on, but I was so angry.  For two years.  I continued to go to church and do the things that I was asked to do.  I served in my callings (during this time I had my FAVORITE all time calling--nursery leader!) and did my visiting teaching.  I did NOT, however, support other women through their pregnancies, go to baby showers, talk to people who were pregnant, associate with young families (except my nursery children), or go to lessons that I knew were about children in any way.  So much anger.  And so much ingratitude!

Wow.  This is very hard for me to write!  I didn't realize that I would be crying and so emotional!  Anyway, I was angry.  And as I said above, I was angry off and on for two years.  During those two years, we decided to do foster care.  NOT for us.  We prayed about adopting.  The answer was no.  I was SO MAD.  WHY was I childless when there were women who neglected, abused, and even discarded their own children?!  It was NOT fair.

During this time, I was continually looking for solace wherever I could find it.  I sought out friends who also didn't have children/didn't want children.  I focused on my relationship with my husband (this was the BEST thing that came out of this...but I'll tell you about that in a bit).  I read many articles on the Church's website about other couples who struggled with infertility.  The worst part, though, was that most of these couples either adopted or were able to have their own children.  Both options that my husband and I were being told would not be happening in the near future.  It wasn't until I read an article by Sis. Ardeth Kapp for the second time that I finally felt I had found the person who could understand me.  For those of you struggling with infertility, this article is something you HAVE to read.

Okay, so I read and re-read the article.  And read the scriptures.  And I prayed.  A lot.  And now you're wondering why I am telling you this and what it has to do with gratitude.  Well, this is what it has to do with gratitude--EVERYTHING.

While I had been sitting in my own little pity party, I had neglected (not all the time) to be grateful for what I HAD!  I had an eternal companion sealed to me forever.  He is faithful to me!  He LOVES me!  He would do ANYTHING for me!  I had the gospel--I knew who I was, why I was here, and where I was going to go if I endured to the end!  I had health (for the most part), a will and desire to work, talents that the Lord had given me, a house, food, clothing, a family who loved me, the scriptures, prayer, the promises of staying faithful to the covenants I had made, the Atonement.  The love of God and of my Savior.  I could go on!  It was during an especially dark time when I realized all this.

I had been crying and praying, asking Father in Heaven WHY.  WHY weren't we allowed to have children?  WHY did I have to go through this?!  I had been promised that I would have not only what I needed, but what I wanted so many times!!!

You know what my answer was?  It was a simple, strong feeling.  A calming voice in my head that said, "You will have everything that you WANT when your will is aligned with My will."  Oh.  Peace came to me immediately.  I knew that I needed to change--my attitude, my prayers, my life!  I realized that there is a reason for ALL trials--and, YES, this is true of all of them--the reason is to draw us near unto God.  ALWAYS.  Each trial is designed to draw us nearer to God IF we choose it.

And so, I have!  I know focus my prayers on the things that I am grateful for.  My husband and I still work and prepare for the family that we will have one day.  We work together as Primary teachers and strive to build a loving relationship that will not tarnish as time goes by.  I have started to associate more with the children in our ward.  I've befriended many young mothers and tried to help them in their struggles.  I have an amazing Primary class full of children that I love and that love me.  I work in the public school system with children who have special needs and special spirits.  I babysit for those who need me to.  I have sweet nieces and nephews that I get to mother.  I have friends and colleagues who need mothering, and I try to fill that role. Oh, and I re-read that article each time I feel like I need a sympathetic ear.

I  am NOT childless.  They are all around me!  I am so thankful to a Father in Heaven who knows what is best for ME.  Who gives me EVERYTHING--needs and wants.  Since this decision, things have really turned around for my husband and I.  I know that it is probably a matter of perspective, but today as I write, there are so many NEW things from this past week that I am thankful for!  We ALL have so much to be thankful for!  I hope that you take the time today to pray and give thanks to God--He gives us everything!  Have a restful Sabbath, friends! :)

Linking this post to: Tell Me A Story, Titus 2sdays, Women Living Well.


A Joyful Noise said...

Although I have three children plus two others, I can relate to your story and understand your anger and frustration until God taught you to be greatful. My daughter-in-law could not get pregnate, and she also was angry and JEALOUS of other women when they were pregnate and she was not. I suggested that instead of hating these women and being mad at God, perhaps she should be HAPPY for those who were pregnate and thank God that he had blessed them with children. She was not too happy with my suggestion, but it did help her to take a look inside and notice where this was all coming from. She never did have children, but she has learned to mother others who were without a mother.
Thank you for sharing your sweet story at "Tell Me a Story."

Karen Letchworth said...

Thanks for sharing this story. I can feel the tears you shed as you wrote this. All I can say for sure is that the Bible tells us that God is the only One who can open the womb, and is also the One who closes the womb. His will for us is always perfect, and He makes everything beautiful IN HIS TIME. Keep praying TO GOD for His will in your life. Let Him know that you put yourself in the center of His will, and that you will allow Him to speak to you. Then, when He must be willing to do WHATEVER He asks. Keep claiming His promises. He makes all things beautiful IN HIS TIME not in ours. If you are in the center of HIS will for your life, and empty of yourself, there is no better place to be and you will never be disappointed again. That's a promise from His precious Word. Claim it!

On a separate note, I wanted to tell you how grateful I am for your continued support at WAW. You've been with us faithfully from the beginning, and have won only once. (i think). I would like to send you a little something. Please email me your mailing address so I can pop it in the mail.

Please know that I pray for you, Mynnette. I want God's will for you, His perfect peace in your life, and for you to seek after Him always. The truth lies in Jesus.


Kelli Stellmon said...

Wow! I am in awe. I have never experienced what you're going through. But I do have a son who is infertile, but married a sweet young lady with 2 children from a previous marriage. So I still feel so much pain for him. But those two girls are our grandchildren in every way.
I am overwhelmed with gratitude now because I have my own trials, especially in watching my grown children go through some pretty tough trials. I wonder why all the time. I hurt for them. Tonight, I WILL remember to thank my Father in Heaven for all the trials that come their way and mine. You are one incredible woman, Mynette! God does bless you!

Kelli Stellmon said...

Mynette, I am in awe! I am overwhelmed with gratitude right now. God has blessed you, and you have blessed me for sharing your story. While I have not experienced what you have, we do have a son who is infertile. He married a sweet young lady that has 2 daughters from a previous marriage and they are very much his children and our grandchildren. But, he has suffered the pain of never having experienced the birth of his own children. I have cried many tears on his behalf. And...I long to take away the pain all of my grown children go through with their own trials. Not tonight. I will give thanks to our Father in Heaven for our trials and the lessons we learn from them. God bless you.

Julie said...

Dear Mynnette,
Thank you for letting us into your "Uni-Verse" each week for Primary helps. It is fun to read your Blog filled with life experiences which enrich my own. You are right about trials--they are to help us draw unto God and learn what He would have us learn. I am sorry for your struggle with infertility. My husband and I have walked that path, too--and also one of multiple miscarriages. (Those who claim that mothers should not grieve for unborn children would not claim this, if they have gone through the pregnancy discomfort/hope/ and joy/ only to suffer the lose of an infant never to draw a breath). I wrote a poem you might like. You can find it here (it is much like your sweet testimony of trials). You can find it here:The Master Gardner of my Soul (Rough Draft)

Julie said...

Dear Mynnette,
ThAnK yOu ofr your lesson helps and sharing your experiences with us. My heart grieves with you. You are so right--each trial we have can bring us closer to God and help us learn what He would want us to know!
I had a moment like this last week when writing a poem about a recent miscarriage. It is still very rough but if you would like to read it, you can find it here: The Master Gardner of My Soul (Rough Draft). Warmly, Julie

Sheila said...

Thanks for sharing your story. It was a powerful reminder for me to put my trust in Heavenly Father no matter what. By the way somewhere on you blog I saw the name "Kitchen". My maiden name is "Kitchen".

Julie said...

You have some brilliant ideas. Thank you for them:)

I teach CTR 5's. I always do a colouring page for them but I don't do many handouts as I know they just get thrown in the bin & that's just a waste of money then.

I've often wondered if many members keep the colouring pages etc that their children do?

If I had children I would keep every colouring page that they do in primary, also any handouts & every talk that they ever gave. I would include these in memory books/scrapbooks.

Members often laugh at me when I tell them this but if they'd wanted children as much as I have they'd treasure everything like this.

MiKeira said...

Hey! I just have to say how incredible you are to change your attitude throughout your infertility. It is hard. SO hard! I have walked that path and am still walking that path. I have felt those EXACT things you have shared. I have gone through my own anger towards God and distancing myself from Him, since I thought He was so cruel to make me go through this. I have also come to acceptance and found wonderful things that have come to pass because I do not have children. Its always hard for me to hear about how being a mother is the greatest and most divine role of women and what does that say for us that can't have children? Well, I believe that yes that is the greatest role of women, however God has spared some of us righteous women from this role to do His "other" work that others cannot do. We may not know what that "other" work is, but He does and He is preparing us and helping us to grow and be strengthened. My husband and I have been married 9 1/2 years. We have suffered the loss of a failed adoption and then a few short months later our own miracle pregnancy end in miscarriage about 8 weeks. It was so hard and so painful. I have never had to go through such a painful heart wrenching experience. This happened the last part of 2011 and it is still heavy on my mind over 2 years later. It has helped me to realize that I can't go through my trials without the help and guidance of my Savior who has felt everything I feel. We are truly so blessed to have the knowledge that we do. I would love to connect with you--if you want. My email is Or you can find me on facebook. We could be strength for one another when times get hard and discouraging. Just a thought. Take care- Keira

Ashley Mazerolle said...

I was preparing my lesson today and I came across this help.
I was just about to close the browser when I saw your story of infertility.

this is EXACTLY what I have been struggling with for the past while alongside with Endometriosis.
I've slowly come to the realization that I have a purpose more than just being a pregnant mommy.

Thank you for your example and for sharing your story. I am going to read that article right now.
Thank you!