Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Vernon and Connie Richardson Family's Tributes to Grandma Richardson

When I was in 6th grade, I had a dream of singing in the Phoenix Boys’ Choir.  But to be in the choir, I had to practice in North Phoenix, which had to be 45 minutes each way.  To help me fulfill my dream, mom would drive me all the way there, wait for me for an hour or so and then drive me 45 minutes back at least once during the week and on Saturday mornings.   That commitment to me, especially in the presence of many others that needed that time is a good illustration of my mom focusing on the one, a practice I try to continue today.
The other part of this tribute is to mention mom’s consistency.  Mom has consistently had scripture study, family prayer, and family home evening.  She consistently wrote in her journal.  She knows when she does those things, that we are asking for God to bless us with love and with testimony.  We all know that the gospel and family are the two most important parts of her life and that has made those two things priorities in my life as well.
Mom would be the one who would play board games with us on Sunday nights!
Mom would be the one who would follow up on our school work.  We knew school work was important to her.
Mom would be the one who would follow up on our piano practicing.  We knew music was important to her.
I enjoyed when mom and dad came to my mission and mom could talk to my investigators in Spanish!
I enjoyed spending the day with mom in Fiji!  Beautiful gardens, beautiful beaches, a beautiful for just her and me!
I love you, mom.  Thanks for being my mom. Love, Vernon

One very fond memory I have a Mom Richardson is the time that she helped us when we were trying to adopt twin boys from Boise, Idaho.  She met me in Salt Lake City and then we flew together to Boise.  That was the first and only time I have ever flown First Class!!!  We met the twins at the Boise airport and then flew back with them to Kansas.  What I really was grateful on that trip with the chance to visit with Mom Richardson during the flights and hear her accounting of their experiences with adoptions.  I felt that hearing her retell those stories helped me to understand her and know her better.  I also felt a deeper connection with her later when I had experienced some heart break in adoption proceedings because I knew she had as well. 
I also remember the time when Vernon and I lived in Illinois and I worked to surprise Vernon with a statue of Hyrum and Joseph Smith – a replica of the one at Carthage Jail in Carthage, IL.  She helped me get it and transported it to Illinois to surprise Vernon for his birthday.  Unfortunately, the head of Joseph was broken off, but we gave it to Vernon anyway and then she took it back to Arizona and helped us get it exchanged.  I really appreciated all the extra effort she put in to helping me get a surprise gift for Vernon.  Love, Connie

I remember visiting Grandma and Grandpa in Indonesia while they were on their mission. I remember helping them to deliver wheel chairs, visiting the fish farm they helped to set up, and attending the English class they helped to teach. It was neat to see all the humanitarian projects they were working on. I have always been impressed by Grandma's willingness to serve others and how she is always seeking ways to serve others more. I could see this when we visited them in Indonesia and I can see it now as Grandma comes up to Salt Lake this week to serve at the Conference Center. Grandma is a great example of service to me.  Love, Alison

One of my most recent favorite memories of Grandma Richardson is spending time with her and Melvin, Tami, Katelyn, and Ashley in Paris.  We all had so much fun together.  One night we went and saw the eiffel tower lit up and sparking at night.  Then we went on a night cruise down the Seine river.  Grandma was so sweet and paid for all of us! Grandma was a great travel companion as she was so interested in learning about all of the sites and their histories.  Grandma is great and always so supportive of us and makes me feel good about myself and the righteous decisions I make.  I love you Grandma! Love, Melissa

Grandma, the biggest memory I have is when we visited you in Indonesia.  I had some culture shock and my dad went to another city.  You and Grandpa did a wonderful job taking care of me and comforting me. I am especially proud that we are now both missionaries for the church.  I'm really enjoying my time in the MTC getting ready to serve – I can't imagine going to Mexico without any language training!  Love you, Grandma. Love, Hyrum

Joseph – I think it is cool that she goes to Salt Lake City every Wednesday to be a missionary.  She is always happy to see us when we visit!

Rebecca – We like how she always calls us on our birthdays! I always like how she likes to read books to us when she comes!

Benjamin – What more can I say than has already been said or will be awfully soon? You're awesome, Grandma! You're a great example for your children and grandchildren!

Rachel – I really love to see the pictures you take from all over the world!  I also like it when Grandma calls on my birthday!

Bethany- I love it when Grandma calls me on my birthday and that she always welcomes us into her home! Grandma, by you and grandpa serving missions, you have inspired me!!! I remember visiting you and Grandpa in Nauvoo! And when you walked us through the Carthage Jail!  I can't wait to go back there this summer!

Daniel – I like that Grandma reads us stories. I also think Grandma is a great cook! I also think Grandma is very generous!

David – I like that she takes pictures of us when we come over.  I like to see those pictures. I can't wait to see her at the reunion.

Mason – I like when grandma comes and reads me books!

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