You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.

Everyone knows what pencils are. Everyone uses pencils. They are inexpensive and easy to find. But did you know that pencils are like your life?

1. Everything you do will leave a mark.

2. You will make mistakes but they can be corrected.

3. The most important part is what is inside you.

4. You will undergo painful sharpenings that will only make you better.

5. You will be guided by the hands that hold you.

What an amazing analogy.  I have been through some sharpenings lately, but they are making me stronger…I hope.  It’s not easy.  Sharpenings hurt.  Many tears have been shed.  But just as I was feeling my lowest, a dear friend stopped me and made me talk.  I am so grateful to her, more than she will ever know. 

It’s not over yet, but it’s getting better.  I am scrapbooking again, and that is helping.  It is something that I am doing for me.  Well, it’s for the kids, but the time is for me.  I am doing something that I want to do, not that I have to do.  And it’s healing.

You’ll never sharpen a pencil the same way again!

Without adversity, the butterfly would never have the strength to achieve its destiny. It would never develp the strength to become extraordinary.

Joseph B. Wirthlin

If you want to read me on your smart phone, just use your barcode scanner to read this code and it will take you right to me!  How cool is that?

QR code of mobile preview of your blog

On a side note, I apologize for the lack of posts lately.  I have been going through some pretty big struggles, some because of me, and some because of others.  But I am going to do better.  I can’t let others choices affect how I view life. 

As you overcome adversity in your life, you will become stronger. Then you will be better able to help others - those who are working, in their turn, to find a safe harbor from the storms that rage about them.

Joseph B. Wirthlin
If you have a cell phone, you should watch this video. It's very powerful. I am committing to try and not touch my phone while driving. It's not worth it.

Utah Texting While Driving PSA 1085-Echo: A Texting Tragedy: "The video tells the story of two Utah men who were killed by the actions of another texting driver."

Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100...

If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this:

The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.

The fifth would pay $1.

The sixth would pay $3.

The seventh would pay $7.

The eighth would pay $12.

The ninth would pay $18.

The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.

So, that's what they decided to do...

The ten men drank in the bar every day and seemed quite happy with the arrangement, until one day, the owner threw them a curve ball. "Since you are all such good customers," he said, "I'm going to reduce the cost of your daily beer by $20". Drinks for the ten men would now cost just $80.

The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes. So the first four men were unaffected. They would still drink for free. But what about the other six men? How could they divide the $20 windfall so that everyone would get his fair share?

They realized that $20 divided by six is $3.33. But if they subtracted that from everybody's share, then the fifth man and the sixth man would each end up being paid to drink his beer. So, the bar owner suggested that it would be fair to reduce each man's bill by a higher percentage the poorer he was, to follow the principle of the tax system they had been using, and he proceeded to work out the amounts he suggested that each should now pay.

And so the fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing (100% saving).

The sixth now paid $2 instead of $3 (33% saving).

The seventh now paid $5 instead of $7 (28% saving).

The eighth now paid $9 instead of $12 (25% saving).

The ninth now paid $14 instead of $18 (22% saving).

The tenth now paid $49 instead of $59 (16% saving).

Each of the six was better off than before. And the first four continued to drink for free. But, once outside the bar, the men began to compare their savings.

"I only got a dollar out of the $20 saving," declared the sixth man. He pointed to the tenth man, “but he got $10!

"Yeah, that's right," exclaimed the fifth man. "I only saved a dollar too. It's unfair that he got ten times more benefit than me!"

"That's true!" shouted the seventh man. "Why should he get $10 back, when I got only $2? The wealthy get all the breaks!"

"Wait a minute," yelled the first four men in unison, "we didn't get anything at all. This new tax system exploits the poor!"

The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up.

The next night the tenth man didn't show up for drinks, so the nine sat down and had their beers without him. But when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered something important. They didn't have enough money between all of them for even half of the bill!

And that, boys and girls, journalists and government ministers, is how our tax system works. The people who already pay the highest taxes will naturally get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy, and they just may not show up anymore. In fact, they might start drinking overseas, where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.

David R. Kamerschen, Ph.D. Professor of Economics.

For those who understand, no explanation is needed.
For those who do not understand, no explanation is possible.

Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.

The 2011 Mutual theme is the 13th Article of Faith.

“We believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to all men.  Indeed we may say 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.”

Are we seeking after these things?  Or are we lowering our standards? Are we setting a good example for our children?


Life is hard. It's harder when you're stupid.

--John Wayne