come, follow me for yw -- why are marriage and family important?


Why are marriage and family important? 

Oh my goodness, this is such an in-depth question!! As I read over the lesson outline and pondered which quote to letter, I found so many different spins you could take on this topic. I also saw a lot of negative statements, and while I'm not blind to problems that exist, I wanted to find a positive message to letter in a quote.

I finally settled with this quote from Carole M. Stephens. I love it because it reminds us that we are all one big family. There is so much diversity in this world, and everyone in it is loved and cherished by God. As we minister, we invite everyone to the fold as well.

 I'll feature this on Instagram a little sooner to the lesson as a reminder, just wanted it to be up and available!

Oh yeah lowkey forgot to mention that! The blog is on Insta now. 

Be sure to check out the acct and give it a follow. 😁 We're like just just starting out on that platform, so don't judge the few posts that are up there, but I've been planning out lots of cute lil things to post and there's going to be some good stuff up there! There may be a few shop items sprinkled in, but there's mostly going to be lots of inspirational quotes and scriptures. 

I converted it into a 8.5 x 11 printable, which you can get for free here. 

Best of luck as you teach your lesson!!

teach the theme is here!!

Update: 😪sadly, due to quarantine, I had to take this product off the shop. It isn’t virtual-friendly, but if you are interested, 😂message me on Etsy and I can bring it back as a custom order for you. Thank you!

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Aaaah this has been in the works for SO long and I am so excited to share it with you!

This was such a fun product to create last year, and it was the first one that got my (back then) brand new Etsy shop on the map and on some people's radar as a place for beautifully designed Latter-Day Saint teaching resources. 

It has been such a year of transformation and growth since that shakily hand-lettered scribble-filled packet full of doodles and good ideas, design-wise!

As I learned (and continue to always learn) the art of graphic design this year, I knew that any second try would yield better results than the original teach the theme printables, but I was worried that I wouldn't be able to come up with fun activities, games, and messages again. 

But inspiration and great ideas came (no doubt with a lil heavenly help 😂) and I can truly tell y'all that this is a pretty amazing packet! I ended up totaling the pages to see if it was a number worth bragging about and the calculator said 46 (If I ever claim to have done math without one, don't trust my findings!) and... I think that's a good number!

I'll let the pictures serve as previews of all the good stuff inside and explain a little more about everything you'll get with your purchase below!


This picture makes an... attempt to convey everything in this packet. There is a lot that I couldn't fit on one little Pinterest picture, but I feel like it also does a good job of showing the theme, which was sooooo fun to create! 

Officially, it's "The Search for Spiritual Treasure," and aesthetically, it's where the Book of Mormon tropical fun scene, a treasure hunt vibe, and the faintest hint of a pirate look meet. It has super fun colors, and it is gender neutral so you can use it with YM & YW. 

Oh yeah ofc also there are so many ways to use this! Our classic ward activity is this super fun kickoff night party thing, but we have made sure to design it so that it works as a BYD, 5th Sunday lesson, or fun girls camp experience. And it has also been created in a way that has an option for the youth to lead!

I love this because I feel like lately in the church there has been such an emphasis on...

-revelation. Think President Nelson -- "It will not be possible to survive spiritually without it" etc, and some, myself included, struggle at times to know exactly what revelation is, how to receive it, and like, will God ever talk to me?? Revelation is the heart of what this entire activity is about. 

There are three "units" (which aren't crazy long or anything, that's just what we're going to call it) which are all about seeking, receiving, and acting on personal revelation.

-the youth leading things. This is so that your youth can teach the entire lesson. Invite your class presidency to pick one of the five sections and let him or her run with it. I've got enough structure to get the youth started, but enough leeway that he or she can make each section their own. The included planning pages and checklist will help youth and adult leaders coordinate for a smooth and successful event.

-not watering everything down. When I teach, (and sometimes in general) I tend to always want to make everything one giant party. If it's not fun, why force people through it? If something's boring, why don't we just start having a more interesting discussion? 

But I've had to learn that there has to be a balance between super boring mega nap lectures and little kid parties when we teach the gospel. 

While making things fun has a great effect, we also don't want to make it at a level that they are spiritually way past at where they are, not able to feel the Spirit, and not learning anything, and it probably is harder for people to come out and say "Um y'all we gotta be a lil more serious" instead of "SIESTA TO FIESTA, NOW!!" 

This packet maintains a good balance between moments of fun and learning and moments of stillness and learning, if that makes any sort of sense.


As I said before, there's the 3 teaching units! I also added in the closer because having 3 items wasn't super working aesthetically; in reality there are actually 5 parts to this: the introduction, unit 1, unit 2, unit 3, and a fun closer, which have all been carefully created to be fun and spiritually sustaining; I explain about them in more detail below.


It's all about revelation y'all! This may seem random or strange, but as we discuss in the packet, revelation is at the heart of Nephi's famous words. Nephi didn't always understand why Lehi did what he was doing, or follow along blindly with his father's will. Which is no less noble of him and I think actually makes him a much more relatable figure, which is good.

So how did he get from an average teen to the big BOM hero this activity is all about? He sought personal revelation. It's nearly impossible to understand what's going on with Nephi with the "go & do" phrase, even with the whole verse included.

 What is Nephi going to go and do? Yes, I know it's "what is commanded" but what is commanded? Where? When? Why? How? All you need to do is back up a few verses to be enlightened about the situation.

As any person would be, Nephi is confused about the situation. "What's going on with Dad? Why do we have to move into the wilderness? I kinda like how things are now." 

His sibs feel the same, although it seems that the L bros are lil more vocal about their concerns. But what sets Nephi apart from them and puts him on a trajectory to be great? Again! As we read in 1 Nephi 2-3, he sought personal revelation. The Spirit witnesses to him that it is true, it is real, and that he should listen to his dad. 

So why is that personal revelation catchy crazy church buzzword what this packet is all about? 

It's what Nephi's faith journey and personal journey (and our own journeys) are all about, and it's an important topic to learn.


That pic just details the organization of the packet a lil. There are lots of pages of teaching ideas, checklists, etc, that aren't the most graphic to be displayed but are key to creating a great activity experience.


Seek it! Yay! If the intro activity is good, you'll have a better chance of keeping the youths' attention, at least, that's my logic and experience! People often set their expectations through beginning experiences, and I wanted to be sure that this activity had a good one! And so, it all starts with a game.

This was soooo fun to make, and it's Book of Mormon themed. It's based off Spot It, super fun, super aesthetic and cute, just love how this game turned out. It was hard to create and engineer and everything, which makes it being completed that much more rewarding.

And ofc there's a devotional for each section including this part to tie things in. But I wanted the very first thing they did to be smth super fun.


And we're on unit 1! So fun! There was a lot of deep studying and poring over recent remarks from General Authorities, and I don't want to claim that they are all from the most recent one, bc I'm not 100% sure that every! single! quote! and teaching point came from there, but a lot really are. The fed but not nourished deer have a cameo, for example. 

After I rounded up a ton of relevant quotes I had to turn it into a fun activity, and I thought, what could be more appropriate for this topic than a treasure hunt?

With the use of the giant treasure map (which is available as a poster or 4 8.5 x 11 pages) and special clues embedded within each important quote and lesson about seeking revelation, youth will gather information on where to find the spiritual treasure in the room.

*Also, this is important, I'm not going to spoil where it is/what the clues lead to bc that would be lame, but it's not a church-specific object where the treasure will be hidden, it's a household item that anyone and all church buildings have. You can do this activity anywhere!*


Unit 2 might be the climax of this whole thing, it's sooo good and I love how it turned out! Not to say that the other items aren't great, but receiving personal revelation is super important and a big skill to learn. You can't claim that God never talks to you if you don't know the ways God talks. As Albert Einstein said, (and I promise this is related!) "Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid."

It reminds me of the video about light, and I couldn't include it bc it had some topics that are fine for seminary age kids but might be a lil sketch to bring up with the little kids that are in the youth program nowadays... anyways, it's below, and it talks about how this dude thinks that if God is real, He will show Himself to the dude, and yeah, spoiler, it doesn't happen. He learns that revelation is a process requiring patience, something beautiful that happens over long periods of time as we attempt to step into God's glorious light.


Also a lil sidetrack here, but this LDSLiving article about when you can't receive revelation is soooooo good and super related to this topic! 

Bottom line, revelation and receiving it are hot topics and they are heavily covered in this module with a scripture chase! It's pretty simple, but it's been dressed up a bit with cute printables.

But it's also like super powerful tho. The foundation of this was taken from Preach My Gospel, so that we knew that all of these examples were doctrinally sound, especially because they cited where they came from in the scriptures. This is a super great section!


And now it's time to act! This is a game that is designed to get the youth talking and having fun as they discuss ways to act in faith as demonstrated by Nephi's example in the theme. I really don't want to spoil what goes on in this one, but it's fun, it's a game, there's a ball 😂 as you can see above, and it includes quotes and connections to the recent General Conference.


And then we have a great closer! Classic, I know, to end with an invitation to act, but that's what it's really all about, right? "The gospel of Christ invites us to become something," Dallin H. Oaks said. I feel like that's actually a little harsh, not his idea, just the way it was worded. 

We already are something amazing, a beautiful child of God! I think the point he was trying to make is that the gospel invites us to become someone new, which is a constant challenge and opportunity. This closing activity connects the Book of Mormon, goal setting, the theme, all sorts of fun stuff, and there's a super cute tag for treats.

I think I've put out plenty of information about everything in this packet, maybe even more than most care to hear, but, gotta fully answer all questions! Now onto the next big project.

Support the shop for free by following the Pinterest account or favoriting the shop.

And if you are interested in making or looking into a purchase, you can check out this digital download packet here!

lds christmas quote #4 -- christmas story


Hey, y’all. I am here with another quote for CHRISTMAS! Whoop whoop! Just loving this holiday season, and how this adorable quote ended up turning out.
This is such a beautiful quote, y’all, and it reminds us about love, the prime motivator of everything God does for us.
He teaches and leads with love, not Pharisaical contempt and judgment.
Out of love, He gave us the commandments and guidelines that keep us safe.
We love Him because He first loved us, and knows us — all our faults, quirks, temptations and issues — and loves us anyway.
But this is maybe a pretty big final reason that Christmas is all about love. You know y’all know John 3:16.
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
It’s almost like sending a child of yours into a dangerous mission, hoping they don’t die.
Heavenly Father sent His Son Jesus, to die, atone for our sins, and save us all.
The first part of the Christmas miracle is the beautiful knowledge that Heavenly Father sent the Savior, to condescend (which means to dwell below usual conditions, not to be condescending as we usually think of it, I’ve learned) to our level, to have our bodies and our trials and live in our fallen world, with sickness, trial, evil, and death.
He knew He was sending His Son to be hated, scourged, humiliated, persecuted, bullied, and ultimately, betrayed and unjustly put to an agonizing death as He was crucified for us all.
But ultimately, it didn’t just happen. It was a choice. It wasn’t even Jesus saying “I will go and do” (which is no less noble at all) but Him saying “Father, send I” as He volunteered to be the Savior, and later saying “Thy will be done” before the Atonement, an unimaginable sacrifice and experience. And why? Because our Savior loves us.
It was Heavenly Father’s choice as well, to let Him go, let His son go to Earth despite knowing everything that would befall Him there.
But then again, the birth of Christ would mean nothing if He didn’t go on to live, faithfully accepting His mortal mission, “growing in wisdom, favor with God, favor with man” and obediently following His Father through His mortal reign and ministry.
John 15:13 says, “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”
We celebrate not just that He was born, but that He is the Savior, and through His sacrifice, we can have eternal life. And that is the joy of this season.

children and youth goal setting helps



Y’all! 2020!! Whoop whoop! I am so excited to get going on these goals, and go right into all these inspired changes beginning this year! 🥳 We should get to start using the Gospel Living app, which should be cool, the new BOM course of study, but I think a big thing that is on everyone’s minds is the Children and Youth goal setting. I wanted to create a lil something to help families incorporate this in their lives, and I thought free Printables going with a little family kick-off party could be super fun to share!

I created 3 ways for Latter-Day Saints to use the printables, based on situations and callings. The FHE packet contains everything I created, and the activity packet has an annotated version that would work within a 1-hour activity slot. However, ofc you are more than welcome to browse the other packets and take the best ideas from them which they have to offer!



FHE Packet & Plans:
1. Talk about everyone's best memories of 2019. Complete the "year in review" printable page.
2. Complete the "Goal Fails" activity.
3. Read the New Era article from President Ballard or view and discuss the summary posters.
4. As a family, complete Goal Planning pages and discuss what everyone is hoping to do this year.



Children/Youth Activity Packet & Plans:
1. Complete the "Goal Fails" activity.
2. As a primary children/youth group, complete Goal Planning pages. Hand them out to the children/youth in place of or alongside the Children/Youth guidebooks, which they are meant to serve as a companion for.



Personal Goal Setting Packet & Plans:
Read the article "Go for It" by President Ballard and complete the reflection and goal planning pages.
If you love the packet, please follow the blog on Pinterest! It just takes a click and there is lots of good stuff rounded up over there.
Best of luck y’all!

lds Christmas quote #3 - He is the center of it all


I love this quote, especially how it alludes to the true reason we celebrate Christmas. A lot of things have been added, but it when you strip all of that away, it is about Him. 

I love taking things and relating them to the gospel! Here are 5 symbols that you wouldn’t think of as being religious, accompanied with their tie ins. 

And please don’t think that I am saying the Savior to a mere reindeer, etc, because He and all the other gospel symbols are so much more powerful than that. I’m doing the reverse, showing how contemporary symbols of Christmas can be tied in to gospel ideas. 
1. Rudolph

Rudolph with your nose so bright, won’t you guide my sleigh tonight?

This Christmas song tells the story of a very mistreated reindeer. The reindeer teased him. They laughed at him. Oh, and they didn’t let play any reindeer games. Must have been tough. And why? All because he was different.

This faintly reminds me of the Savior’s experience. He is the only begotten son, the only one who could die for us, live again, and save us from our sins.

As they say, He is the light of the world. The light isn’t a light coming from a red nose, but it is bright, it shines in the darkness, and it can help us get to our heavenly home.

2. Candy Cane
“Look at the candy cane. What do you see? Stripes that are red, like the blood shed for me. White is for my Savior, sinless and pure. ‘J’ is for Jesus, my Lord, that’s for sure! Turn it around and a staff you’ll see. Jesus is my Shepherd, was born for me.”

Ok. I kind of hate that poem, but it does prove the point! The reason I strongly dislike it is that the grammar is all over the place... you can’t just say, “is my Shepherd, was born for me.” And 50K people have made their own little printables without giving any credit to whoever wrote it ... whoever it was... but it’s fine. I shall calmly contain my rage! 😇

The candy cane looks similar to a shepherd’s staff, reminding us of the Savior this holiday is all about. He is the good shepherd because He will - and does - leave the 99 to find the 1, pick us up on His shoulders and safely carry us home. I made a gift idea about it here.

3. Elves

“I’m part of prep and landing, an elite unit of elves getting houses ready, around the world, for the big guy’s arrival.” 

Y’all! Prep and landing! I originally got this idea from when I really thought about it more in detail and explained it in depth on the blog post here. Basically, I realized that Prep and Landing is SUCH a gospel metaphor, and the plot is sooo similar to “The Best Two Years.” If you haven’t seen either one, stay with me.

There are two elves - Wayne and Lenny - in this movie. Lenny is an excited newcomer, but he’s dumb (“This isn’t the language they taught me at the MTC!” Right?) Wayne is tired of his job. (Lenny: Don’t you even care? Wayne: I’ve been working Prep and Landing 227 years. Believe me, the thrill is gone.” He’s been out in the field for the while! And his responsibility has lost its spark.

But through an experience he realizes why they do what they do, the Christmas spirit returns, and he joyfully returns to his noble duties. I love both of these movies sooo much! Again, check out this analogy more explained on my FHE blog post here!! 

4. Christmas tree

“Your boughs so green in summertime
Stay bravely green in wintertime
O christmas tree, o Christmas tree
How lovely are thy branches.”

The other day, my brother asked me, “why do some trees’ leaves fall but others stay all year?” I smiled, and pointed to several trees in our yard. “There are deciduous trees, and coniferous leaves. I can’t exactly remember why... but... the deciduous ones shed their leaves, and the coniferous ones keep theirs long after the deciduous trees’ leaves have fallen away.” This reminded me of the doctrine of eternal marriage - just as a evergreen tree continues to have its green pine needles throughout the whole year, celestial marriages last so much longer than “until death do you part.” 

5. Christmas cookies

“Everyone is kneaded out of the same dough but not baked in the same oven." 
— Yiddish proverb

So how is she gonna tie this one in? hahaha just you wait. Ok. 

So there’s the dough, and what do you do with it next? You roll it out and then cut out the cookies.

Jeremiah 18:6 tells us, “Behold, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are ye in mine hand.” While the Lord is specifically talking to the House of Israel here, that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t apply to us as a metaphor. 

He is in the details in our lives, and the circumstances we are given, these refiners fires, allow us to grow closer to God and what He wants us to become.

Yay! That’s it for this week! Hope y’all have a great weekend and think about how to tie in the symbols of Christmas. If you come up with any more fun ones, let me know! ;)

come, follow me free printable binder



These printables are my big gift to y'all for 2020! They took a lot of time to create and I was tempted to sell this, but I realized that that would be typical. There are lots of people selling things like this for Come, Follow Me, but this is a freebie for y'all! (I even made black and white editions of many things for those looking to save money.) I hope this individual study binder helps make a positive difference in your CFM experience.

I am super excited to put out some resources about Come Follow Me for this year, all about the Book of Mormon! There is seriously so much out there for helping kids and families better incorporate come follow me in their lives and I am all for it! But I see a bit of a need for resources for the “Individuals” part of the program.
I know there are so many circumstances of members of the church, and these individual study helps are made to benefit anyone looking to grow in the Book of Mormon on their own.
I created a beautiful binder set for free, featuring several key things:
•come follow me reading schedule
•cover page & spine
•daily study page
•weekly study page
•dividers
•four focuses
•sabbath notes
Some of these aren’t necessarily related to Come Follow Me, but I thought it would be super great to have everything in one useful place for y’all. I go through each part in more detail with y’all down here.

YOU READY FOR THIS? HERE ARE THE LINKS!

Be sure to share and enjoy this, but please link and Pin to this blog post, not directly to the binder file. The English file can be found here, y puedes encontrar el paquete en español aquí. If you love these, you could support the blog by following our Pinterest account? Just trying to grow the blog presence there and that is a quick way you can help!

If you want to see everything included in the (free) PDF, or don't understand how to use one of the pages, keep scrolling! 😉


Cover Page & Spine & Dividers

If this is going to be a binder, it needs a cute cover page and spine to catch your interest and remind you, “Time to study!” It is pretty, but I made sure to make it not too bright, as with the whole packet, so that it would be printer-friendly. It has a nice little muted color palette! And I think the spine and dividers are lovely as well.

Weekly Study Page
I like this page’s cute format, and I think this is the one I’ll use often. I write most of my insights in my scriptures themselves, and then do a little wrap-up paragraph when I’m done with my 15-minute study. And, of course, this can be used in many ways. You could choose to just study one verse a day and build up to longer habits, or dive deep into that one verse a day this year, annotating it, highlighting it, writing cross references, turning it into a work of art! There are SO many ways to study, and this was another way to meet diverse needs.

Below is an example page of how to use this feature.
I used it to divide up how much I was going to read daily.

Sabbath Notes

Pretty straightforward. A cute lil notes sheet you can use on Sundays. I did a lil example page of that below. Enjoy!

Four Focuses

This SERIOUSLY saved my life the last year of Come Follow Me. I did a lot of experimenting, it being the first year and all, and tried a lot of different things.

At first I just listened to podcasts, which was great, but I felt like I needed to be doing more. So then I jumped to the other extreme, which was so much worse. I thought that I needed to do it perfectly, annotating and reading and writing a paragraph about every! single! verse! But that didn’t really work for my life, at least in this stage of it.
I would end up spending 4 hours on my Sundays doing this, and end feeling so overwhelmed and really hating Come Follow Me.
It became such a negative experience for me that I stopped doing it altogether for a while, because between seminary and Book of Mormon study, and... everything, I couldn’t handle one more thing.
But I wanted to change. I realized that studying a little was so much better than not studying at all. So I crafted up a modified method - harder than what I did at the beginning, but easier than what I was forcing myself to do before.
I reread the manual. I looked over what the prophets had said. And I found nowhere that I needed to be doing it so extensively. So I looked over the manual, and decided to use it as I studied. The “Four Focuses” method was born. (Or I think maybe prompted into existence!)
It’s pretty simple — what I do is open the manual, and look under the “Ideas for Individual Study.” I pick 4 topics that look interesting to me. (Sometimes there’s only 4 anyways, it changes from week to week!)
I write each topic and its scriptures in the fields, and focus on reading, annotating, and writing about each one. I then choose my favorite scripture for the week, and also, something I will go and do to apply what I learned.

It is so much more simple, and since I adopted it, I haven’t missed a week of study. Here is an example page I did of it for the first week, "Introductory Pages of the Book of Mormon."

Whether you end up using any of the Printables or not, the point is, to me, that you should do what works for you! Comparison usually doesn’t end well, and you can’t hate yourself into being better. You have to pray and receive revelation about what works best for you/your family.


Come Follow Me Reading Schedule
And here it is! So cute. I think everyone will want to use this one. Some of the other printables aren’t required for everyone to use, but I think everyone could benefit from this visual reminder of what’s going on!

QUICK TUTORIAL

And below is a super simple tutorial on putting it all together! Seriously so easy.

First, you can print out all of the pages, which are linked to above. You'll also want a hole punch, and paper cutter plus tape to insert the dividers and spine.



Insert the cover, slide the spine into the side, flip over and insert the reading schedule. Then cut out the dividers.



You can tape the dividers on the right of the first page of each section. And then you're done!


That's it! Thx for stopping on by. Good luck with your 2020 study.

lds christmas quote #2 — when santa joined the fun


Hey, y’all! It’s the Christmas season — yet again — and I’m so excited to share this hand-lettered quote. It’s from Jeffrey R. Holland, and it teaches 2 basic things:

  1. "All (of these fun Christmas symbols) are welcome. While we can be in the danger of forgetting the Christ in Christmas sometimes, these additional symbols of Christmas in and of themselves aren’t always bad. They can even be turned into gospel analogies, as I display here. This movie “Why do we call it Christmas” for kids is SO great for explaining all of the reasons behind the name Christmas, the tree, its time in the year, who St. Nick was and how he turned into Santa Claus, and more -- all in a not boring way! What matters is the results it brings to our lives -- by the fruits ye shall know them, right?
  2. An entirely different spin could be taken off of this quote if desired. Sometimes we can get so stressed and overwhelmed at the holidays — all this shopping to do, decorating, baking, keeping up traditions and habits, and everything there seems to beg to be done. But it’s a gentle reminder that all those things are optional - you are choosing to participate in these traditions and getting the credit for doing so, but you can also choose to eliminate ones that are doing more harm than good.
Just a few things to think about! Merry Christmas y’all!


#lighttheworld yw christmas gift idea


Okay y’all, officially my bad, but there are still 3 Sundays to hand out this super cute #LightTheWorld young women Christmas gift!! I promised I would create one, and here it is. I love how cute it turned out. I wanted this to be timeless, something that works for all the #LightTheWorld campaigns because although they change the theme every year, it always is the same principle: teaming together as a church to create an impact during Christmastime in the world. That’s what the poem on here is all about — a young women class effort to serve this season.
The poem isn’t my best of all time, but hey, it works! 😂
The gift going with it is twinkle lights! (That brand is the one I used/have tested.) About them, it says,
“Here are some twinkle lights.
They sparkle in the night.
They give off warmth and radiance as they shine bright.
Although these lights are tiny,
These lights on the string,
They unite and they share light.
This Christmas let’s all #LightTheWorld and live like our Savior, our King.
When we work together we can do great things.
Twinkle lights are just sooo cute and a great gift for Christmas! You can get the poems, there are 4 to a page, as gift tags, here. Don’t forget to check out my other #LightTheWorld resources and sign up for those service texts!