Meeting Recap 1/12/16

Hey Ladies,

If you missed the meeting on Tuesday; here are the announcements:

January 19 Mom’s Night Out: Dinner and a movie.  See Evite.

January 26 Next Meeting (further discussion of our service project for 2016)

Feb 6 Family Valentine’s Party being held at the church – Kids will get to make a cookie.

There are opportunities available on leadership.  If you are interested please talk to someone on steering so that we can arrange for you to come to one of the leadership meetings so you can get a better idea of how things run in the background.

Feb Meetings 12 and 26th

Feb 19 Playdate at Curiosity Museum (several moms have membership which allow them to get an unlimited number of people in for half off)  If cost is an issue please talk to someone on leadership.  If  you need a ride let someone know and we can make arrangements.


As for our meeting this week:  you missed our new Junior Mentor Mom Jenn Hatch discussing new year resolutions.

Jenn became a grandmother on January  6 to Sawyer Mei Shelton.  And like most grandma’s she things she is the most beautiful baby.   She has three children: Michael (24), Jaxon (6), Elayna (5).  She was the coordinator of this MOPS group two years ago and stepped away to finish her Associate of Science in Sociology.  She graduated in the spring and is so glad to be back mentoring to us.


Here are some words from Jenn:

Sometimes we need a new perspective to flourish, celebrate lavishly, embrace rest, and recognize the goodness in our lives.

“Commit to the Lord whatever you do and he will establish your plans” (Proverbs 16:3)

It seems like there is always change happening in my life, whether it’s the beginning or end of the year. Changes in jobs, ministries, housing, location, friends, and even schedules. Change can be hard and uncomfortable. But everything healthy goes through change. As you look ahead to the coming year I challenge you to be open  to change. But we also must do our part to create change.  Changes that will benefit our life and impact our health – physically, emotionally, and spiritually. One thing that is for sure is that this year is going to go by fast and we will either come out better, worse or the same. We also cannot change on our own we need God’s help. This is why many New Year’s Resolutions do not last past January because you are trying to do them alone.  Ask for help. Find an accountability partner. Pray.

If you’re looking for changes to better yourself and flourish this year, here are some great ideas to get you started.

Practice Being Present

The past few years have brought huge changes in our lives with the introduction of the latest and greatest technology.  We’re all totally “connected” every single moment of the day. But often times, our connection to the inanimate trumps our connection to the intimate. We’ve sort of lost the art of connecting to real people in real life. This year, consider setting your phone aside a little more, in exchange for more of real life. Instead of always catching the moment for Instagram, be deliberate about soaking in and savoring the moment simply for yourself.

Start a Bucket List

So often in life we wait around for the milestones of life, not realizing that every step of the journey holds value and significance. So stop waiting around for the next big thing, and start living life by creating a bucket list for yourself this year. As you’re planning it out, don’t just think extravagant (thought that’s always fun), but think meaningful as well: schedule an interview with a grandparent to glean their wisdom, share Jesus with an unbelieving friend, sponsor a compassion child, invite someone to church, or get creative with random acts of kindness. Whatever it is, stop waiting and start living. Create a meaningful life by doing meaningful things.

Get Involved in Community

One of the most meaningful things you can invest in this year is people. The concept of community is such an important part in the life of a Christian because it is in the context of our relationships that we have the opportunity to learn how to five and receive love. Take initiative, have the courage to be vulnerable, and get involved in community like never before this coming year. We weren’t meant to do this life alone, so let’s not.

Be Actively Generous

We can all afford to be more generous. And generosity is such an important thing to foster, because it really shapes the condition of our heart.  The more we can give to God, the world around us, and those in need, the more we realize that the most valuable things are not our possessions, but the sharing of our possessions. Open your heart and learn to give this year. Because where your treasure is, there your heart will be as well.

Plug into Ministry

What are the talents and passions God has gifted you with, and how are you using those talents for him? That’s an important question to answer in your pursuit of becoming the person God made you to be. Whether or not you realize it, you have so much to offer the world around you. And as you give you will quickly learn that service is actually sort of “hedonistic” because it truly feels better to give than to receive.

Be more Active

Even in our 20’s and 30’s, we could all use a little more physical health and fitness in our lives (um…especially those of us in our 40s). Whether that means joining a gym (and not just through February), running a marathon (maybe start with a 5k), parking at the end of the lot and walking the rest of the way, taking the stairs at work, or eating healthier foods – take inventory of your life and examine the changes that need to be made as you strive to honor God with your body more this year.

Dig Into God’s Word

This one is for me this year. I really want to dig into God’s word in a new way. I am desiring to see God’s words with new eyes and an open heart.  Sometimes, in our familiarity of God’s word, it can seem to grow stale.  But the problem  isn’t with  his word, it’s with our heart.  Commit to feasting on God’s words this year, asking for transformation in your life.  Because there’s nothing more satisfying than blocking out the noise of this world, and instead being filled with his Truth.

Emotional/Relational Goals

Colossians 3:12-13 says ” Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tender-hearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.  Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.” Often we need to work on emotional issues or strained relationships, but continually avoid doing so because of the difficulties involved.  Consider goals in the following areas:

  1. Forgiveness – Decide to extend the gift of forgiveness for an old hurt. You’ll gain a new sense of freedom because you no longer carry a grudge.
  2. Patience – practice patience win areas where you are historically impatient.

Whether you take on just one or even all of these challenges, may we all strive to make this year the best one we’ve ever lived.

Jenn also gave us a worksheet so we can fill it out and have a visual reminder of our goals to help us all Flourish in 2016.   You can find it here.  The remainder of the meeting was spent discussing the M & M game at your table.The newsletter also has an article Five ways to flourish as a Mom and age appropriate goal setting tips for children.  If you missed it, you can read it here.

See you at the next meeting on  January 26th

November 24th: Fiercely Creative

Meetings, like today’s, I am so grateful for the wonderful women and mothers that attend our group.  They bring an incredible amount of encouragement and love, that they are willing to step up and help one another out through a difficult time or share a piece of their life with one another in order to encourage them. I truly don’t deserve to be blessed by all of these women.  Being the meeting right before a Thanksgiving Holiday,  we are reminded of the wonderful country we live in and the good that we have here. Often, it is easy to get trapped by the consumerism and busyness that life throws at us and we tend to loose our focus on the things that are the most important. Fortunately, Jen Witherspoon, our Hospitality Leader; reminded us that through some of her hard and sometimes tragic personal life experiences that she shared an important lesson that she has learned and it is that we shouldn’t get ourselves so busy that we miss the blessing of our children. We need to take the time to make those memories because they grow up way too fast. This was definitely a great reminder to FLOURISH in the way MOPS is challenging us to do so:

“Embrace Rest, Notice Goodness, and Celebrate Lavishly”!!

In addition to a great reminder to Fiercely Flourish, we had to be Fiercely Creative with the complexities of a difficult craft as the one chosen (sorry :/ ).  Although the process can be hard, the end result will be phenomenal!

H in Process

Wrapping paper mache letters is not for the faint of heart, despite what Pinterest says!  Unless you have L, F, or E; you can count on fighting through a more difficult and complex letter and I truly apologize to those who have crazy letters like S or K. No matter what you do, stick with it and it will be worth it!

I have included any tutorials or tips that will help make the process of wrapping paper mache letters easier and embellishments that you can adorn your letter with once complete. I have also included links to some of the best tutorials on the blogoshpere (check them out below!).


Please share or comment any tips or your completed project, we’d love to see them!

Completed M


Blog 1         Blog 2        Blog 3      Blog 4

Tips and Tutorials:

Rolling a Felt Rose     

Felt Peony Substitute     

Cabbage Rose        

How to Create a Ribbon Rose      

Felt Peony      

Felt Poinsettia

Tips For Wrapping a Paper Mache Letter

Andrea Madison

Written by: Andrea Madison, GCBC MOPS Coordinator


November 11th: Fiercely Safe

Navigating through parenthood is often a trial and error scenario.  What works with one little person doesn’t with the other and we raise them often hoping that they just turn out right.  Fortunately, we can do some things with the assurance that we are doing them right; one of them being, keeping our children safe.  This is perhaps one of the most important things we can strive to accomplish in this chaotic phase of life!

At the November 11th meeting, Cambree Applegate from Safe Kids Utah came and spoke to us at length in regards to car seat safety and reviewed general safety guidelines we can keep in mind and implement at home.  Many things about keeping little ones safe seem like common sense and would be straight forward, however there are times that things are not.


We are very appreciative of Cambree for coming and enlightening us on many of the in’s and out’s of carseat safety and we hope that you are able to implement her tips and ensure that your child is kept safe in the event the unthinkable happens.

Speaking to GCBC MOPS about car seat safety

Speaking to GCBC MOPS about car seat safety

If you are interested in having your car seats inspected, please check out the links below.  Many of them require an appointment and various locations have set days and times in the week that they perform inspections.  Having your seats inspected provides the ultimate peace of mind. (Utah)

To see all the details of our MOPS meeting for announcements, discussion and details, click HERE to read our November 11th Meeting Minutes.

Feel free to CONTACT us if you have any questions or want any further info from this Meeting.

Andrea 3

Written by: Andrea Madison, GCBC MOPS Coordinator

Noticing Goodness And Knowing What is Good

Noticing Goodness And Knowing What is Good

   This is one of our 2015-2016 Mops Themes – that is “Noticing Goodness”. I chose months ago to write about this theme first and foremost because I want to become a more grateful human being. I chose November to write because I love Thanksgiving, when people gather to celebrate “thankfulness” for the “good” things in life. Ever since I chose to write on “goodness”, I have been more intentional about my observation of this life’s abundant blessings, whether seen, touched, felt, heard or tasted. I hope you all have experienced, like I have, much “good” and not “bad” in your life as well since we started our “flourishing” Mops 2015-2016 year!!

Now did you notice that, unfortunately, in noticing “good” we can’t help but think of its antithesis- “bad” or even “evil”?  Being the questioning sort of person that I am, I began to contemplate how does one intrinsically know what is “good” from what is “bad”. Or do we sometimes get the two mixed up? Have you ever experienced something “bad” that actually turned out quite “good” or vice versa? I must admit I like to watch the Dr Phil show from time to time. I also watch the world news and read the newspaper fairly regularly. It becomes overly apparent that we seem to live in a pretty “bad” environment. Why can’t people and nations just get along? There seems to be chaos and disconnect everywhere, intermixed with some “good” positive news as well.

So I want to raise the logical question: “Is moral ‘goodness’ an absolute or is it subject to reinterpretation according to the desires of society?”  I can take this question to the extreme; one society says I should not murder you or harm you in any way. Another society says you can and you may be my next meal! A favorite family story of ours illustrates my point even better. We like the movie “End of the Spear” and books about Jim Elliot and Nate Saint. These Christian missionaries dared to befriend a very dangerous tribe in Ecuador called the Auca Indians. To make a long story short, both lost their lives when the tribe turned on them because of a slanderous woman’s misinformation. This happened after spending a week with them enjoying each other’s company with many talks around the camp fire.   But the story did not end there. Their wives befriended a girl who managed to leave the tribe and she in turn taught them the Auca native language. The wives again made contact with the Indians where they lived in the jungle peaceably for over 2 years. The tribe’s members, through these women, experienced love and forgiveness that they had never seen and their lives and society were dramatically changed through the Biblical principles learned from their new friends living amongst them.

I believe the forefathers of this great nation understood that the God of the Bible, and the practice of His truths and principles were the essential ingredients to a peaceful “good” existence between individuals, government, allied nations, individuals and families. I illustrate this with the words of George Washington himself when he proclaimed Thanksgiving a “public day of thanksgiving and prayer” to “Almighty God”.

As President, on October 3, 1789, George Washington made the following proclamation and created the first Thanksgiving Day designated by the national government of the United States of America:

 Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor, and whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint Committee requested me “to recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness.”

 Now therefore I do recommend and assign Thursday the 26th day of November next to be devoted by the People of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being, who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be. That we may then all unite in rendering unto him our sincere and humble thanks, for his kind care and protection of the People of this Country previous to their becoming a Nation, for the signal and manifold mercies, and the favorable interpositions of his providence, which we experienced in the course and conclusion of the late war, for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty, which we have since enjoyed, for the peaceable and rational manner, in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national One now lately instituted, for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed; and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and in general for all the great and various favors which he hath been pleased to confer upon us.

 And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech him to pardon our national and other transgressions, to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually, to render our national government a blessing to all the people, by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed, to protect and guide all Sovereigns and Nations (especially such as have shown kindness unto us) and to bless them with good government, peace, and concord. To promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the increase of science among them and Us, and generally to grant unto all Mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as he alone knows to be best.

 Given under my hand at the City of New York the third day of October in the year of our Lord 1789.

George Washington again proclaimed a Thanksgiving in 1795.

  So this Thanksgiving will you, with your family and alone in your prayer closet, take meaningful time to meditate and to Praise God for “all His benefits” (Psalm 103:2)? Will you think about all the good He provides for mankind – His crowning creation – the only one’s created “In His image” (Genesis 1:26-27)? Will you look to Jesus, the Savior, by trusting in Him for the greatest gift of all – that is, never ending life? If you haven’t done so will you take the time to read the Gospel of John?

Titus 3:4-7 explains that simple faith alone in Christ is all that is required. Mercy is undeserved and cannot be earned:

4 But when the goodness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, 5 He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, 6 This Spirit He poured out upon us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that having been justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the promise of eternal life. Titus 3:4-7


 Mary Visnovsky

Written by Mary Visnovsky- Mops Mentor Mom at GCBC