Thursday, September 11, 2014

Our Back to School Dinner and introduction of our Family Theme

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These cute little children have been back to school for weeks.

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Summer is officially over.

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I’m a little slow or I guess you could say I’ve been a little busy…

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…because I am so slow posting these photos of the first day of school.

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This year we had our back to school dinner the night before the kids went back to school.

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It was a beautiful night and a wonderful way to kick off the school year.

I set the table with our fancy dishes and glasses.

…but I kept the meal simple.  It was one of those crazy nights; so simple was all I could muster.

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To tell you the honest truth, the kids really would rather simple.

Who doesn’t love pancakes for dinner?

I am learning that it doesn’t have to be over the top fancy to be special.

At each table setting I placed a simple reminder of our theme this year.

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Our theme is:

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I printed a little reminder that was placed at their table setting.  It was meant for them to hang in their room after our dinner; as a reminder to wake up each morning and shine.

Rise and shine

Each child had a crown as a reminder that we are all princesses and princes.  With a beautiful light from Christ to share with others.

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When we talked to our kids about light, I reminded them about the light source.

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The light source in our life is the Savior.

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When I do photography, the light source that I prefer is the true light.  The natural light; the sun light.

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I know the light from the Savior is the true light or just for a little play on words; we could also call him the “son” light.

As I have been reflecting on this theme for months, I have had very profound thoughts about sharing our light and what that means.  I feel it very important for me to write these thoughts down. 

I hope you can learn from them as I have.

And because the Lord teaches us in ways that we can understand; he helped me learn in terms I know.  He taught me about the light by thinking of it in terms of photography; so pardon my metaphors.

  When I am taking photos, I go around the house and turn off all the lights.  The lighting in our house puts off such an ugly color hue in pictures.  But sunlight, that brings out the most vibrant colors in photography.

We know that the sun light comes through our windows.  If we think of ourselves as the windows we know we have to let the light in and through.  Dark curtains are never good for letting the light in. In fact, we close curtains when we don’t want any light in. How am I closing myself off to the light of Christ?  What are your dark curtains? I can think of many mistakes that I make that won’t let that light in.  This metaphor helps me to remember to keep my curtains open, so I don’t allow anything dark to stand in the way of the light.

Another thought that was impressed upon me, is if I truly am thinking of myself as the window, then I must remember that I am made of glass. It reminds me of how vulnerable I am.  Glass breaks.  It breaks easily.  We break easily too.

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It is through the Savior and his atonement that we can pick up those pieces of broken glass and be put back together.  He makes it possible to let our light shine.

With that in mind, I like to think of myself as a beautiful piece of stained glass. Through the atonement I can be renewed as each piece of glass is put back together, allowing all the beautiful light to pass through. It helps me a lot on those days when I let one to many things break down my glass. 

Even though I am broken, it is through the Savior and his atonement that I can shine and be beautiful.

With the struggles in today’s world I want my kids to remember to draw upon that light, and to use the atonement.  I hope and pray that when struggles come they renew themselves and let the Savior put the pieces back together.

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I hope I have taught them well enough when they are not in my presence. I pray that they can remember the light of Christ within; and with it they can bless themselves and others.

I pray that they let their light shine.

As a reminder of our theme this year, I bought this beautiful stained glass star.  I love that it is pieces of broken glass put together to serve as the reminder that we are all broken; yet still beautiful. A reminder that we need the Savior’s loving sacrifice.

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My other favorite part is that it is a star with the reminder to shine.

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…and so it hangs to remind us each day to let our light so shine.

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Shortly after our dinner and introduction of our theme, we finished up with our back to school tradition of Priesthood blessings.  These blessings are given to them each year by their father.

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A blessing is meant to give comfort, counsel, and guidance.

Each blessing was filled with beautiful promises, and amazing blessings.

I was touched to hear of the blessings promised to each child throughout the school year if they were to remember to pray morning and night.

When we fulfill what we have been asked to do the Lord is bound to fulfill his promises.

This promise brought me great comfort.

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It was a good night.  I love nights like these.



Leslie Posey said...

Love your theme! Is it just your family theme..Ward theme? Stella is so tall..she looks taller than jex! I love the stained glass star and that it's not perfect just like ourselves! ♡ reading your posts!

JW said...

Great theme and great traditions!

julie said...

Absolutely beautiful. What a thought provoking theme, this is a wonderful idea. Thank for sharing xx

Laurie said...

I love it! Your blog always inspires me so much, thank you for posting. I don't know if your kids ever watch Sofia the First, but she sings a darling song about "It's time to rise and shine, stand up and make the day mine...." Anyway, I saw your theme and then couldn't get the song out of my head. :)

Elaine said...

Lovely! Thanks for sharing your Light!
I joy following you and your sweet family!

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