Tuesday, October 28, 2014

An Angel - the Death of a Baby

Last week, I went to a funeral for my nephew's baby.  She was three days old.  Her tiny casket was open and lying inside was the most perfect, tiny baby I have ever seen.  Before she was born, her parents knew there was a problem with her heart which the doctors could not fix. These same doctors told her parents that they would have maybe two to four weeks with their baby.  I've thought a lot about the agony this must have caused this young couple.

Knowing the fate that awaited his unborn niece, another of my nephews used his talents to lovingly make a tiny casket.  This was such a selfless act of brotherly love. Just thinking about his kindness brings tears to my eyes. 

Today, I wanted to share a few thoughts and my cherished belief.  I believe each of us comes to earth to receive a body and to be tried and tested to see how we will live our lives. When a baby comes to earth and only lives a short time, that baby is perfect already. Because that baby is already an angel he or she doesn't need to be tested.  My church teaches that if a child dies before the age of accountability - which is eight years old, then they automatically go back to live with Heavenly Father and receive the highest glory he has to give to them.  That little baby came to earth to receive her body and that is what happened to this great-niece of mine.  She was already so perfect, she did not need to be tried or tested.

All children start out their mortal probation in purity and innocence because of the atonement. Our revelations also say, “The Son of God hath atoned for original guilt, wherein the sins of the parents cannot be answered upon the heads of the children, for they are whole from the foundation of the world.” (Moses 6:54.)Bruce R. McConkie

Joseph Smith’s Vision of the Celestial Kingdom contains this statement: “And I also beheld that all children who die before they arrive at the years of accountability are saved in the celestial kingdom of heaven.” (Doctrine Covenants 137:10)

We may rest assured that all things are controlled and governed by Him whose spirit children we are. He knows the end from the beginning, and he provides for each of us the testings and trials which he knows we need. President Joseph Fielding Smith once told me that we must assume that the Lord knows and arranges beforehand who shall be taken in infancy and who shall remain on earth to undergo whatever tests are needed in their cases. This accords with Joseph Smith’s statement: “The Lord takes many away, even in infancy, that they may escape the envy of man, and the sorrows and evils of this present world; they were too pure, too lovely, to live on earth.” (Teachings, pp. 196–97.) It is implicit in the whole scheme of things that those of us who have arrived at the years of accountability need the tests and trials to which we are subject and that our problem is to overcome the world and attain that spotless and pure state which little children already possess.
“And their little children need no repentance, neither baptism. Behold, baptism is unto repentance to the fulfilling the commandments unto the remission of sins.

“But little children are alive in Christ, even from the foundation of the world; if not so, God is a partial God, and also a changeable God, and a respecter to persons; for how many little children have died without baptism!”   - 

At the end of the graveside service, pink balloons were released.  Notice how one heart is pulling the other heart balloon up into heaven.  This made me think, "Will the thought of a cherished loved one who has passed onto the next life help us to be better, to act better, to lift others and be more Christ like?  

Sending love to all of those that go through this situation.  Especially sending love and support to my older brother and his family, especially my nephew and his wife.  xoxo

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Family Reunion at the Beach

If you're going to have a family reunion and you want to have fun, go to the beach!  This is such a perfect place to play, dig in the sand & meet all those new relatives that have joined your family.

Thank you to all those that put this together, my two brother's for hosting the Thatcher clan at their places & for the Oregon weather; for not raining on us until the day I flew back home.  I'm  hoping we can do this again in two years and that more of my children will be able to attend.

Day One - Built a sand sculpture with my nieces and grand nieces & nephews.
Day Two - built another sand sculpture with more family it helps to have artistic nieces like Jennifer.
Joy & Joy - love this girl!

Spending time with my granddaughter:
Day Three - introduce my Andrea & granddaughter to Old Country Kitchen - YUMMY!

Monday, July 28, 2014

4th of July Weekend - Illinois

I'm a little behind on this post but here's a glimpse into our 4th of July weekend in Illinois:
Sunday, John blessed our beautiful granddaughter.  So so glad we got to be there for this event.  To see more photos of her dress go HERE.

Love their smiles!
Loved that Brittany & Brian's family drove all the way to spend the weekend with us - it just made our trip even more special.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Our 4th Granddaughter

Here are some photos from my trip to Illinois:
Dr. Jazz's Soda Fountain and Grill in Lebanon, Illinois a circa 1900's fountain - Amy is 9+ months pregnant in this photo.
Saturday playing at a water park not far from Amy and John's house.
 Just look at that face - does my grandson look like he's having fun?  
Playing with the stick pony I made for him.  For detailed instructions on how to make your own stick pony and additional photos of my grandson playing with his pony, go HERE.  

I did not know that this lake plus one more are in the next neighborhood over from Amy's home.  Preston loved chasing the Canadian geese into someone's backyard!  These photos were taken on the first night I spent alone with this little boy...while we anxiously awaited the birth of his sister.  He was so good for me but kept asking where Mommy and Daddy were.
Preston couldn't figure out why the ducks took off, I'm sure he thought they were his friends!  He's such a friendly little boy.
Meeting the newest addition to our family.  When Amy asked her two year old if Grandma could hold her, he authoritatively announced "NO"!  I did get a turn holding her as you'll see below. 
I prayed at least twice daily that this little girl would be a happy baby & thank goodness; she was so peaceful. I also prayed that her brother would be gentle with her and love her.  I'm here to tell you that prayers are answered and I feel so grateful and blessed!  Her big brother even shared his blanket with her.  It was so sweet but then he tried to lay his head on her...oops - not such a good idea.
Discovering mushrooms growing in a tree and exploring the field at the end of his street.
More photos of this adventure can be found HERE.

This is a beautiful park in St Louis called Forest Park.  After church, Amy & John took me for a drive into the city so I could see this.  I'm planning on going again on my next trip - I want to try the paddle boats and see the art museum. 

American shirt I made for this boy - for more photos of this boy and beautiful park go HERE.
I left my phone on Amy's ottoman and her two year old snapped at least 50 photos of his mom, the floor, ceiling...etc.  He also managed to turn on my phone's flashlight, which I did not even remember that I had on my phone!  Look how amazing my daughter looks - this photo was taken only five days after she had her baby...compare it to the first photos & you'll be impressed too.

I really enjoyed my trip to Illinois. I enjoyed being able to meet my granddaughter when she was about six hours old.  I also enjoyed the time I got to spend with Amy, John and my energetic little grandson.  I'm also excited that my husband purchased us tickets to fly back for our granddaughter's baby blessing at church in a few weeks!  I'm so grateful for airlines that get me to my children's families!