Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Monday, November 11, 2013
Sunday, November 10, 2013
A quote I like about obedience, “A seed of faith is already planted in your heart…But like a growing plant, it must be nurtured or it will wither. Frequent and heartfelt prayers of faith are crucial and needed nutrients. Obedience to the truth you have received will keep the testimony alive and strengthen it. Obedience to the commandments is part of the nourishment you must provide for your testimony.”
I am currently reading the book Choose Higher Ground by Henry B. Eyring. On page 37 I found another quote about obedience I like. “However much faith to obey God we now have, we will need to strength it continually and keep it refreshed constantly. We can do that by deciding now to be more quick to obey and more determined to endure”
Joseph F. Smith said, “.Men must not be constrained against their will to obey the will of God; they must obey it because they know it to be right, because they desire to do it, and because it is their pleasure to do it. God delights in the willing heart.”
One last quote that was posted at the MTC when a grandson was there, “Obedience is the price, faith is the power, love is the motive, the Spirit is the key, happiness is the reward, Christ is the reason.”
It is my prayer that we can all obey and sustain the leaders called to direct the work in these Latter-days.
Lots of love now and forever, Mom, Grandma, Lavona
Friday, November 1, 2013
I received tonight this letter on e-mail and wanted to share it with you. I gave this man a tour of the conference center yesterday in Salt Lake City,. I was so impressed with him and his desire to learn. It was a great thrill for me to introduce the Book of Mormon to him and to bear my testimony about this great book. I was also privileged to share with him the story of the restoration of the gospel and again bear my testimony. I could feel the spirit so strong.
I wanted to share with you the letter I received today from this great man. I hope that the missionaries can continue to teach him. I am so grateful to be a missionary and the great experiences that I have each week.
Mom, Grandma, Lavona Richardson
My name is David Stanton and you gave me my tour of the conference center on Wednesday. I wanted to thank you for your kindness and enthusiasm in sharing a wonderful building and your faith with me. I have been most impressed by my visit to Salt Lake. I want you to know I went to the Deseret book store and purchased a copy of the Book of Mormon and look forward to reading it. I think too often we as people focus on the divisions between us. This is especially true when it comes to faith. I am grateful for the opportunity to have met you and the other kind people of faith I have had the pleasure to meet on my visit here.
I want to tell you again how much your enthusiasm and joy made me feel very welcome as you took me through the tour. I spent ten years in the US Army. I spent a year in Saudi Arabia and a year in Korea. I have lived in Arkansas, Texas, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Wyoming, and South Dakota during my life. In all of my travels I have never been more impressed by a place or the people in it than I have been with Salt Lake City and the good people I met. I have been told by many people that I must remember that there are bad people everywhere, but I choose to focus instead on the fact that there are good people everywhere. There are no better anywhere than the Mormon people of Faith, including you that I had the pleasure to meet this week. As a Catholic I am first a follower of Jesus Christ who seeks to reflect His goodness and to live as He commanded. We share that belief and I recognized in you and the other kind people I met the hearts of followers of Christ. I hope to come again, and if I do I hope that I can come say hello to you at the conference center.
Thank you again for your kindness and your time,
Thursday, October 31, 2013
By Lavona Richardson
Jay and I felt that family traditions were important. We tried to take the best traditions from each of our families that we grew up in for our family and then made some traditions of our own. We instilled in our family the importance of attending Sacrament Meeting and all of our other meetings each Sunday. We sat together as a family at all the Church meetings except when one was assigned to sit on the stand. We sustained our church leaders and never spoke anything negative about our ward, stake or church leaders. Each morning we read scriptures together with each family member taking their turn to read. We had family prayer every morning and every evening. We went together to Tithing settlement at the end of each year. Every Monday night we had family home evening lessons. Before home evening we had a family planning session where each family member told us about the activities they had the following week and we planned the use of our cars and who would go to what event. It was our family tradition to support each other and as often as possible we would attend together as a family the concerts, ball games, cross country meets, 4-H contests and other events to give our support. Our children knew that when they had an event we would all support them.
We celebrated the holidays with special holiday family traditions. On New Year’s Day I would make sauerkraut and pork following the tradition we learned when we were in Pennsylvania that by so doing we would have a prosperous New Year. We found that prosperity meant a great family doing good things instead of worldly wealth.
Valentine’s Day we would send each other valentines. I made rolled out heart cookies and helped with school valentine parties. For many years we celebrated Easter as a family by being in the Easter Pageant at the Arizona Temple Grounds. Usually the Saturday before Easter we planned an Easter picnic at a local park. Easter Sunday we had a tradition of a family picture in our Easter clothes.
Another tradition of our family was that of doing our best. We celebrated at the end of the school year the successes of different family members and attended graduation ceremonies together.
Some of our summer traditions were family reunions. The Ray and Verna Richardson family usually had a camp out that we attended. Around July 24thwe usually went to Snowflake to celebrate at the big Flake Reunion followed by the Founder’s Day Celebration of a parade, pioneer program, rodeo and dance. Another event during the summer months was a family trip to Utah to see married children or the big “M & M Trip” to Church History Sites. We took various other family trips which will be included in another chapter.
The first day of school was important with father’s blessing for each child and a photo as they left for school on that first day.
Another tradition of our family was to be involved in lots of activities in the school. It is a tradition in our family to love to read. I always had lots of good books around to read. For many years I had a church bookstore in my home which helped us build our own family library.
A tradition for Halloween is to have a Halloween Home Evening together theMonday night before Halloween. I made pizza to serve and either cupcakes or rolled out decorated cookies. It is tradition for me to tell the ‘Strange Visitor” story. I started telling the story to my older children when they were toddlers and have continued through the years. We have costume parades with the opportunity for each one to tell about their costume and be spotlighted. Another tradition at our Halloween party is to carve Jack-o-Lanterns. Thanksgiving always brings a family dinner together with everyone contributing to the meal.
At Christmas time we often would go caroling to our neighbors. For several years the children would play tunes on our chimes (metal pipes of various lengths) for caroling or special programs. We usually were able to get pictures with Santa at our Ward Party. Christmas Eve we always had the children act out the story of the First Christmas. Melvin always wanted to be the narrator. We had donkeys, Mary and Joseph and the baby and shepherds and wise men. Another tradition is to sing their Dad’s song of “Mary Sweet Mary” which tells Joseph’s feelings as he and Mary went to Bethlehem. At the end of the program everyone could open one gift which was always something alike for everyone- new pajamas, a knit cap, mittens, shirts alike or whatever. We always took a creative photo of everyone wearing their new item received on Christmas Eve. For several weeks before Christmas we would make Christmas goodies. I asked each one to tell one Christmas goody that they wanted and tried to include making those treats in our family preparations. I made raisin filled cookies and we had popcorn balls, fudge, cookies and lots of Christmas goodies. We have a big family dinner together.
One of the events that I enjoyed the most was working with Jay to put out Christmas. We would carefully plan for some gift for each child that would surprise and excite them. The Santa gifts we didn’t wrap. Very early Christmas morning on the years that we had paper routes we had to deliver the papers before we could start our festivities. To begin our Christmas festivities we would first open our Christmas stockings and each would tell what they found in their Christmas stockings. Their Dad would always be sure he had a big red apple to place in the toe of the stocking. Next we would have breakfast together. I made cinnamon rolls for breakfast to have with fruit.
Christmas morning we always have Christmas races. Each family member is timed as they run around the tree and a winner declared each year. We then tell one thing that we saw around the tree such as a new bicycle, game or whatever. After we go into the tree we take time giving out the gifts and enjoying them. The person giving the gift can find the gift under the tree and tell about purchasing it for some family member as they give it to them.
I enjoy photography and made scrapbooks of family events through the years. The walls of my home are filled with pictures of our family and my children’s families. My bookshelves are full of family scrapbooks and family memories.
One of our special family traditions is temple marriages. Through the years we have always made temple attendance a priority in our lives. All of our children and grandchildren that are married are married in the temple. What a great joy this is in my life. I look forward to many more temple marriages as our children and grandchildren find the one that is right for them.
I feel that our family traditions are important and make our family the great family that it is. It is a great joy to see my children incorporating some of these traditions in their families and making even more traditions that give them strong families. I am grateful for membership in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and for the way of life it gives us as we strive to live the teachings of Jesus Christ. I am happy that we are always making new traditions and each day striving to be better than we were the day before.
Monday, October 7, 2013
The Story of Ray Lot and Verna Richardson
My parents were born in the Mormon Colonies in Mexico. My father Ray Lot Richardson was born in the northernmost Colony, called Colonia Dias, on the 6th of August 1896. Mother, Verna Nelson, was born in a little settlement, called Colonia Garcia on October 12, 1898. While she was still small the family moved to Colonia Chuichupa. Her Father, James Mark Nelson, died and was buried there.
In 1912, the Federal Government informed the colonists that they could not guarantee them protection from the revolutionary bands that roamed the country and recommended that they leave and go to the United States. The people in Colonia Dias were only 15 miles from the International Border. So they loaded their wagon and headed for the U. S. Border. Several Homesteaded just inside the Border among whom was my grandfather Charles Edmund Richardson. Others went out to Hatchita and lived in a tent city. The other Colonies went by train to El Paso, Texas. Many tales are told of their suffering and hardships. Eventually both families ended up in Thatcher, Arizona.
Saturday, October 5, 2013
Friday, September 6, 2013
A Tribute to My Father -- Toastmaster speech
This is an article I found about Charles Edmund Richardson. Him and Sarah Louisa Adams were the parents of Jay M. Richarson's father, Ray Lot Richardson.
Charles Edmund RichardsonCharles Edmund Richardson was born 13 October 1858 in Manti, Utah.
Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Monday, August 19, 2013
This is the wagon of James Madison Flake. It was driven by Green Flake across the Pioneer trek to Salt Lake City, and is the wagon that Brigham Young sat in when he first entered the Salt Lake Valley on July 24, 1847. The wagon now sits at the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers Museum in Salt Lake City.
Saturday, August 17, 2013
When my children were all in school I would walk with them to Broadmor or McKemy and then stay and do the crosswalk in front of McKemy. I would hold up a sign to stop the traffic while the school children walked across the busy College Avenue. This gave me a little spending money.
Thursday, August 8, 2013
After the Merrimac was scuttled he enlisted in the 26th Regiment Company K on Feb. 1, 1863 and fought under Lee until he was wounded at Gettysburg on July 3, 1863. At Gettysburg he served under Colonel Henry King Burgwyn, Jr. Company K apparently distinguished itself on the field of battle while sustaining a large number of casualties. By his side were his brother John Flake and his cousin Philip H. Flake, all members of Company K. On July 1, 1863, Elijah Flake's brother died in the battle of Gettysburg. Two days later his cousin Philip was mortally wounded and Elijah lay injured on the field of battle. During his recovery at the hospital, Elijah was listed as a hospital steward through Feb. 1865. When he returned to his company the war was coming to an end. His last official military act was surrendering, with 134 members of he 26th regiment, at the Appomattox Court House on April 9, 1865.
Tuesday, July 30, 2013
deal. A handshake was as binding as a written contract.
In 1878, he bargained for the land and water rights of James Stinson
in the Silver Creek Valley. The purchase became the town site for
Snowflake. With a handshake, Flake agreed to deliver, over three years,
Utah grade cattle - 200 cows, 150 two-year olds and 200 yearlings. In
exchange, Stinson agreed to sell the land, the water rights, farm equipment
and six mules.
In 1881 when the last cattle were delivered, Stinson wanted to keep a
special saddle mule. Flake said, “No, the mules was in the trade and now
belongs to me.”
Stinson acknowledge that was right and invited Flake to cut five cows out of
the delivered herd so he could keep his special mule. Flake told him, “No, a
deal is a deal and the mule is mine. Pull off your saddle.” With tears in his
eyes, Stinson pulled off the saddle and bridle, patted the mule on the neck
and handed the end of the rope to Flake and walked away.
William J. Flake stopped him and said, “Stinson, we have done a lot
of business in the past three years. For a long time, I have wondered how I
could show you my appreciation. I want to present this mule to one of the
most honest men I have ever met.” Stinson saddled the mule and rode off
without a word.
Does our word or a handshake continue to be honored by each of us?