Thursday, May 4, 2017

New Beginnings 2017

This was actually two weeks ago but it's been a crazy two weeks, so I'm just getting to posting our Young Womens New Beginnings.  It was a great evening and the highlight for me was seeing Grace get her YW Medallion, which she had earned almost twice since she was twelve.  She was supposed to receive it before my new shoulder and then we waited all these months that I was not able to attend church.  We, the leaders, decided to give it to her at the New Beginnings so that all of the girls would see.

So, here's a few pix of the evening...

Grace received her award on the same day that she began attending the YSA.  She's 18 and graduating in a few weeks, so it's time for her to move on to the Young Single Adults.  She's loving it already...however, she was a little nervous when an "old guy" asked her on a date last week.  She said no and neither knew how old the other was, but Doug informed her and she was "AAAHHHHH!"  about it!  ha! New Beginnings was her last "official" Young Womens Event, although she will still go to Girls Camp as a leader this summer.  Lorna, also received her medallion, and both girls also received a  "Willow Tree" praying figurine.  Grace collects them and was thrilled!

Raising four daughters, attending over twenty New Beginnings, they are almost always the same thing... explain the YW Values, tell what each class represents, introduce the new girls and award the older ones.  I wanted to try something new and different. I wanted to simplify it and yet cover our bases.  We found these three "posters" representing each class/age group and displayed them.  No more was said about the individual classes.

Rather than explain or describe each of the eight values, we asked the girls to each stand, impromptu, and had them share any value and what it means to them.  Every girl took a turn.  I loved hearing the girls share an experience or their testimony of how that particular value had made a difference in their life.  No one took more than one minute and this was the biggest part of our program.  No one had been asked in advance, all the values were covered and some a few times.  Loved it!

Our theme for the evening was ASK, LEARN, GROW.  Our president shared her thoughts and had asked four girls to share how Young Womens has brought them closer to Christ.  Zee was one of those four girls.  The girls had some great insights to the beauties and blessings of the Young Womens Organization.

Decorations had been on my mind for weeks and weeks.  With my shoulder, there's not a lot else that I can be working on, so it was wonderful to have a project!  I decided to keep it simple and down to just a treat or two for refreshments.  Valarie decorated these sixty cupcakes to look like flowers.  They were cute, but oh, my!  They were divine. She's quite the baker!  She also made a wedding cake the same week!  That's love and sacrifice!

simple is what I do these days.... found this quote on Pinterest... just like that.

It really was beautiful.  When Bishop walked in, he stopped, took a look and said, "WOW!!"  That was cool to have a man notice the detail!

Ann, the other counselor, had hosted her son's wedding two days prior... hence, Val's wedding cake bake.  Ann brought her flowers from the wedding to enhance the decor!  We were happy to have all those roses still looking beautiful for New Beginnings... Budget friendly decorations is always a plus!

You can't tell, but the flat tray that is not cupcakes, are little white chocolate daisies, which Ann made the morning after the wedding.  Seriously... these ladies are dedicated!

Here's Grace and Lorna!  These two are great friends.  Lorna keeps us all laughing!

 As always, I'm thankful for Doug, who is willing to load up and haul half or our home to every event that I have anything to do with at church.  He is always willing and helpful! I am blessed to have such a supportive husband!

We made these 18 inch paper daisies during presidency meeting a few weeks ago.  They are "Folded Crepe Tissue", not tissue paper.  We cute the petals out, about thirty per flower (details on pinterest under Folded Crepe Paper Daisies) and the centers were large pompoms made of yarns in each of the value colors.

I was touched by ZJ's thoughts in her talk.  She mentioned that we had lost the white pompom for a minute before gluing them on.  She had told me, "It's okay, Mom.  All of the flowers are white, so you can get away without the white center in one."  Then she said that as she had thought about it, the white, which represents Faith, is necessary for each and every one of the other values.  We need faith for every value, every step of the way!   She said it quite eloquently and I loved her sentiment!

The whole evening was perfect!  One little side story.  On Saturday afternoon, late, Doug and I were both sitting down for a moment with our planners. Since he has been serving in the YSA, we don't have a lot of Sundays together.  HOWEVER... He reminded me, "Oh, Babe, because of Easter, they moved our YSA Marraige class to tomorrow night at 5:00, so we teach tomorrow."  I looked at him and said, "HON!  NEW BEGINNinGS is at FIVE tomorrow!"  We both gasped!  So, he grabbed his phone and sent out a few texts.  We teach this class to the YSA engaged couples just before they get married.  It's about communication and strengthening your marriage right from the beginning.  It is our favorite thing that we have EVER done together through our 40 years of serving in the church!  We would never want to miss this class!

SO.  Doug texted and arrange to trade hours with the other High Counselor who teaches the Finance Class, (both are taught back to back, once a month, for the soon-to-be newlyweds). We would teach at six instead of our normal hour at five and he would teach first.  Problem solved.  I informed the Bishop and other YW leaders that I'd set everything up, be there for 45 minutes (which was about the length of the program, but I would not be there for the refreshments.  Then, I asked them to just leave everything for me to come back and pack my things after the marriage class.

All went as planned.  We left and returned and no one saved me a cupcake!!!  NOT ONE!!!  One of the YW leaders sent a group text to the rest of us later that night, after we had come home.  I teased that my heart was broken because I'd left early and I'd not gotten to eat one of Val's beautiful cupcakes.  Two minutes later, the doorbell rang.  It was Kelli, our YW President bringing me the very last cupcake that was left.  Oh, my, it was delish! She is too sweet!  Doug had answered the door and invited her right into our bedroom where the girls, Doug and I were all casually chilling with our scriptures all over our bed.  We visited for a few minutes and agreed that it had been a perfect evening!  Especially now that I had a cupcake!  

Since then, whenever we are out of anything or someone didn't save me a bite, I say, "And no one even saved me a cupcake!"  The girls remind me quickly that Kelli brought me one!  

I do love serving in the capacity of this calling in Young Women, working with my own girls and with the fun ladies that I've become such good friends with!  What a gift!

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