"There is Beauty and Clarity that comes from Simplicity that we sometimes do not Appreciate in our thirst for intricate solutions." ~President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Friday, May 12, 2017

My Testimony of Joseph Smith

As you may know, I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. A little background of our Faith... Back in 1820 there was a 14 yr. old boy named Joseph Smith. He lived in Palmyra, NY. In his time, there was a lot of confusion going on around him of one faith telling another that they were right and the others were false. Amidst all this confusion, Joseph was doing his best to find the one that was right. In his search, he came across this scripture, "If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God." (James 1:5) So that's exactly what he did. That scripture was his answer, and he followed it.

One spring morning, Joseph decided to go to a grove of trees. When he found the right spot, he knelt down and began to pray. This scripture gives the best description:

"It no sooner appeared than I found myself delivered from the enemy
Which held me bound. When the light rested upon me
I saw two Personages,
Who's brightness and glory defy all description,
Standing above me in the air.
One of them spake unto me,
Calling me by name and said,
Pointing to the other--
This is My Beloved Son.
Hear Him."
~Joseph Smith--History
He received a vision. From Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. In this holy vision, Joseph was spoken to by Jesus Christ. He answered Joseph's long awaited question by telling him, that none of the sects (or churches) were right. "They draw near to me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me." (JSH)
So here is young Joseph. He is faced with this incredible experience. When they ascend back to Heaven, he is left with little or no energy. He makes his way home, and the first person he relates all of this to, is his mother, Lucy Mack Smith.
Fast forward a few years, Joseph is given a charge from an angel. Angel Moroni. Who appeared to him. He told Joseph to unbury a golden record. This record contained a great deal. About the Ancient Americas. He finds the plates on a hill. He is asked to translate this record. Which he faithfully does for the next few years.
This record became The Book of Mormon.
And now you know why we have the nickname "Mormon". And it's great. I mean really. We respectfully like to tell people that we are from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but we also feel honored to be known as Mormons. At least I am. :)
Well. That's the background. Now I would like to share with you my personal belief and thoughts of the dear prophet Joseph Smith.
I am aware, let's just say, of places and books and what have you, that have dirt on Joseph Smith. Places and things that would cause anyone to be appalled, or upset, offended, etc. of what Joseph may have done.
Now thankfully, I was raised in an environment, where I have been able to develop my own testimony and view of this man. As I shared at the beginning, I was taught this my whole life. Through video clips, the scriptures, my parents, teachers, and so forth.
It wasn't until I attended a youth oriented camp named "EFY" (Especially For Youth), that I gained a true testimony of Joseph Smith. I was sitting in a classroom, and there was this lady who was speaking to us. She was teaching about Moses, and also Joseph Smith. And then the next moment, she sang to us, "Joseph Smith's First Prayer" in Spanish. I can still remember today as I'm writing this... (I was 14).... the room was immediately filled with the Spirit. It was tender, it was quiet, yet I felt a distinct and powerful feeling, that this was true. What I've been taught all my life, I finally understood. It made complete sense, and it was beautiful. Utterly beautiful. If I could give you that exact feeling with the knowledge I received, I would give it to you in a second!
Moving forward in my life, I have learnt many things, I am continuing to learn things. Good and bad. Fun and not so fun. We all know what this world is going through. It is not pretty. But at the very same time, there is so much good. 
Just today, I am most positive, the Lord has helped me get every single thing I needed to get done today, done. And now I get to sit here, after cleaning my whole downstairs, listening to my parents' choir (Utah Baroque Ensemble) writing out what I am most grateful for in my whole life.
Truly it is a blessing and a treat. But to refer back to Joseph Smith. I recognize he is not a perfect man. He most likely made mistakes. Mistakes. Have you heard of that? Have you made one today? Was it serious? Was it minor? Did I use the right miner? haha. Can you get my point?
But here is my message. My take home message. This is not the church of Joseph Smith. This is,
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
  Joseph Smith brought about the Restoration of the Gospel.
He accomplished all that the Lord entrusted him to do.
From Joseph Smith-- History once more:
"Joseph's name is to be known for
Good and evil
Among all nations."
I believe that Joseph Smith is a true Prophet. I have a firm belief in what I have talked about.
I have a deep love for my Savior, Jesus Christ. Who is perfect, and is who I will always do my
very best to follow.

I love you all. You who have taught me, have loved me, who've supported me, who've been my best and dearest companions. My heart goes out to all those who are really struggling in the world. Oh my goodness life is tough! I promise you though, if you would like to know these truths for yourself, & I encourage you to do so, you will find the truth as well.  If you need access to a Book of Mormon, I am more than happy to oblige you. :) Also, you can go to lds.org for any and all questions you have of our Faith.
Lastly, but not least, if you have questions, I would pray. As Joseph did as a young boy.
Thank you for sticking it out those of you who read to the end. I know this was a lengthy one, so I appreciate you very much. :)
Happy Friday and Happy Mother's Day to you beautiful mothers!
Miss Mabel. 

Sunday, February 26, 2017

My Three Brothers

A long while back, in high school. I'm sure you all remember I did a tribute to my sisters.

What I didn't get to do back then, was finish my tribute(s). For a long while, I've been wanting to do this one as well. But of course time gets away from you, things get in the way. and yes life happens. But I never let go of this tribute that I wanted to make.

Today has been the perfect day to do it. My thoughts have been filling up with all that I've been wanting to say about my three brothers, Jesse, Toby, & Thomas.

So, I hope you enjoy reading, and getting to know these three in my next 3 posts. Or at least, see my view of them as most of you who read this blog, already know some or all of them. :)

Jesse, Toby, & Thomas?
I love ya!
Most photo credit goes to:
Liz Draper. ;)
Thank you

Jesse Campbell

My oldest brother Jesse. Sometimes we call him Jess. But mostly just Jesse. :) How blessed am I to have a brother like Jesse. He is such cool person. and a lot of fun.

My favorite memory from when we were younger is when we went on road trips as a family. Jesse always made it so much fun. and hilarious. For some reason, when you go on a road trip it's always hot. Well no duh, it's usually summer when road trips happen. But that just seems to make things funnier than they really are. Haha well of course, Jesse made it all the more funny. We ended up with inside jokes. And the heat didn't seem to dampen our spirits.

Jesse is so willing to help others and he has helped me many times. In ways he may not even be aware of.

I was lucky enough to accompany him (along with my sister Liz) to Las Vegas to meet his (at the time) future wife, Susan. This was a neat experience for me, to see Jesse as someone who was super excited and happy about a special someone. We dropped him off and went on our own little adventure. And from there, we saw an even happier and excited Jesse as we left good ol' L.V. to go home. Within a few more months, Jesse proposed... and later married the love of his life.

Jesse is: the most talented and amazing Artist. I could say that I'm biased. but I'm pretty sure I'm not. He works right now for Trader Joe's making all their signs. and he's good at it. He served his mission in Russia. He plays the guitar like my other two brothers. He is a Husband. He's a Father. He's a photographer. He is hilarious. Smart. Creative. Generous heart and good one too. He likes David Bowie, the Beatles, Coldplay, and other such music.

I love you Jesse! You have been such an example to me. You've inspired me with your love of art and of course your ability to create it as well. You've given me paintings for gifts. and they are some of my greatest treasure. My favorite one is of Christ, who is hanging up on my wall. I love it.

I'm one proud little sister of my brother Jesse and what he's accomplished.

I'm excited to see what more you will do. :)



Tobin James

This is my second oldest brother Tobin. We call him Toby. I love my brother Toby. He is and always has been a good brother, and person really.

I have many great memories of my childhood, and Toby is one who I enjoyed doing things with. Because he was fun! Ha funny story, One time we made up this game. (we did this sort of thing a lot, but we took it to another level of fun) we were on my bed. and the game was to see who could push the other person off the bed. King of the "bed" you could say.  we were laughing, and getting back on the bed real quick to try again.... correction: I was getting back on the bed laughing ;) haha. well? the next part was kinda too bad. At a certain point, Toby was holding on to me, and I was leaning back. He let go... and I fell back and... hit my head. on the windowsill.

I ended up going to the ER to get stitches. But something my little self (or maybe older self looking back) could tell, or sense. Toby was the one who felt the worst. I've always felt for him. I knew what it was like to feel bad for doing something like that.... a similar thing.

And that's just the nature of Toby. He is a caring soul. So today Toby. I want you to know (even though you could have forgotten and it really doesn't matter now.), I never held that against you. And I know you cared. :) Haha
Toby is: an Amazing Musician. Plays Guitar (which he taught himself to play). Plays it constantly, which I have always loved. Like having your own personal Toby concert, every day. :) It's awesome and I miss it.` Piano. Drums. Sings too. He's an Artist. Draws the neatest things. He served his mission in Madagascar. yeah for reals. A Husband. A Father.  Creative. Smart. Huge heart. Fun to be around. Likes to listen to Beatles. Radiohead. Muse. Coldplay. and other cool ones. :)

Toby I love you. I appreciate all that you have done for me. Not only did you play that bed game with me, but you also taught me how to use a light saber. You gave me rides to and from friends. Took me to get Wendy's. And have been a good listener. and I could not have asked for better.
Thank you. :)
Keep being you and keep creating beautiful sounds with your music.


Thomas Nels

Photo Credit: Liz Draper
This handsome fella is my baby brother Thomas. We have never called him "Tom" or "Tommy". His name is Thomas. I love that my mother distinguished him that way.
I have always had a special love for this boy. Now graduated from high school and already doing great things.
When he came home from the hospital, newly born, I excitedly exclaimed, "this is better than a puppy!" Haha. He was the most precious little baby. I mean just so adorable. and perfect.

From my earliest memories of him, I remember... his cute laugh. when he cried, he would say "mum, mum, mum"

When we moved to Salt Lake, I was homeschooled. He and I were together a lot. In fact. Every day, I got to help take care of him. Such a funny kid. I'll spare you embarrassing anecdotes. But just know, he was fun, but also a handful. ;) Just as little babies/toddlers should be.

Florida next to our swimming pool :)
Thomas is: Smart. Kind. Funny. Creative. Sure of himself. (I admire that about him). Talented. A real good Cook. He has a knack for making the coolest things. He has an artist streak in him. just like his older brothers. He can play the guitar. Taught himself. A lot like Toby. (Toby has helped him too). He is into boxing which I find both crazy and brave... and let's be honest, cool. He has a tenacious spirit. when he wants something, he'll go after it. and he actually does. It's very admirable. :) Likes to listen to Jack Johnson, Jason Miraz, Coldplay... and lot of other cool bands.

I love this boy and what he has accomplished in his life. I'm grateful for the times I've been able to spend with him. He and I both share a love for sports. Specifically basketball. I miss shooting hoops with him.

Thomas. Thank you for what you've taught me.
Please forgive me when I was a  mean older sister. I think the world of you. And I'm so proud of you and excited to see what life has in store for you.

Stay strong and your awesome self.
Love you,

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Look How Cute!

Talked to this cutie tonight.
Found these gems.

Just wanna say I'm glad to have this gal in my life :)

So proud of her and what she is doing. 

Love ya Soph.

Love, Miss Mabel

Friday, December 30, 2016

My thoughts of late...

What makes me happy and what has made me me.

Music. I'm listening to it constantly. It definitely came from my upbringing. It is my second language. I have so many memories tied to different songs. I know it may be unwise at times to be nostalgic, or dwell on the past as they say, but I don't mind when it's put to music :).

One particular memory I never want to forget. I'm in junior high, 9th grade. At my one of my friend's house with a group of girls I became close with. Just as I'm writing this, it feels like yesterday. The song "You Can Call Me Al" (by Paul Simon) came on. So many things I love about these particular girls. First of all, I grew up as a young in' listening and absolutely loving this song. It really is the best. When this song comes on I'm very pleasantly surprised to seeing all my friends at this moment singing and dancing all over my friend's kitchen... to this song! As if, they have listened to it their whole childhood. We have spoons for microphones and when the special trumpets come on we all play it with our fingers with a special move. I love these girls. I love that song even more when I hear it. Love it.

It is really neat, when you can look back. I know it's also good to not look too long so as not to get bogged down by past mistakes or misfortunes(been watching too many Jane Austen films :p)

BUT! I need to see those things every now and then to realize just how incredibly blessed I am.

Today, and several days actually, I've had many insights to all that I've experienced thus far. The more I'm getting older the more I desire to really know who I am. Hence the music part being a big part of my happiness and making me me.

And the reason I can be this happy? It points to:
- My wonderful parents. They are responsible for bringing (to name a few) Beatles, Amy Grant, Billy Joel, Classical, Disney (haha)... Good music.
-My siblings. They are responsible for all the other music I listen to and love.
Obviously music is not the only thing that makes me happy. It really is the people I've been truly blessed to have in my life. I have so many amazing memories I would not trade for the world with these humans. Recent and not so recent. They have all been there for me and I can't thank them enough.

I actually brought up the memory of my friends to point out just how good I have it.

I thank Heavenly Father for my particular trials in this life. I used to be so weighed down by the fact that I was held back in school. I look back and I have to say to myself "I can't believe you thought that was a hard trial!" I would not have made the good friends I made. I feel that my "cup runneth over" with the most remarkable individuals I have, and have had in my short life. Truly each friend I have gained has taught me to enjoy life in the real way. Making a fun time while also being good and uplifting to others. And more valuable traits. So, thank you friends. I feel rich because of you.

Ha, so those are my thoughts lately. I've really been enjoying life. Boy that was long wasn't it!? Ha I wish I could have some music playing in the background. Just hum any tune you'd like that makes you happy while you look at the rest of this post. You're so nice for reading :) And if no one is reading this, at least I can look back on this post and smile and hum "You Can Call Me Al" ;)

The person who is making me happy happy all day every day is my sweetheart. I know I know sappy but oh man is it the truth!


Anyway, I hope you enjoy your 2017. Thanks for all the good times 2016. I'll try 10 years from now to look back and see what was valuable about the trials I had. :)




Miss Mabel