Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Make It Count!

Spring is almost here! The month of March has never been so welcome in our home as it is this year. The end of January and most of February were full of unexpected health challenges, including out-of-state emergency surgery, for complications from my brain tumor. 

I could tally a long list of all the things that went wrong, the things I didn’t plan for, the frustrations, the tears, the medical expenses and the missed opportunities.  However, I could never count all the amazing blessings and realizations that came from these experiences. Here are just a few of the lessons I learned:

The things that can't be counted count more than the things that can be counted. – Boyd Packer

Sunday, January 26, 2014

If at First You Don't Succeed, Join the Club: Wipeouts Required

It is fun to celebrate the successes  of life. But lets be honest, none of the celebrations could take place without the wipeouts that came first. Every basket scored, test passed and jump landed first required practice, hard work—and wipeouts. 

video


You can see video after video of Epic Fails that seem to indicate fails indicate failure, but the opposite is true. It is only those who have failed, crashed, fallen, wiped out or hit a wrong note that eventually succeed.

The difference between failure and success is simply when you stop trying. 

Here's to the wipeouts, not the failures, simply the "I think I can, I think I can" moments that precede the finish lines of life.  

If a first you don't succeed, join the club.

Enjoy this little Wipeout video that has become one of our family favorites. Thanks to Brandon for teaching us this valuable lesson, and making us laugh. 

Friday, November 15, 2013

Connection Speeds & Tech Time Out

"Can you hear me now? What about now?" the man asks, as he moves from spot to spot, proving he has the best phone connections and speed.

Some time in the last few decades, many people stopped living life and started watching "life" on a screen. Screens come in every size now, from minuscule one inch phone screens, to giant 80+ inch TV screens, where you can play games, do business, bank, see videos and watch any one else's life—instead of living your own.

But real Connection Speed has nothing to do with smartphone or cell carriers, it has to do with the time we invest in others, not sitting in the same room playing on phones, but actually connecting with each other, you know, using words.

At our house, we have mandated TECH TIME OUTS every week. Each Sunday and Monday all phones, computers, electronics, and even TV time is out. Instead, we play games together, go for walks, and even talk—to EACH OTHER (in person, not on a phone). Yes, some of the kids complain about it. They think we are the craziest family in the neighborhood, and the meanest parents, no one else would do this to their kids. We even turned off the TV for 2 months, just to see what would happen...

Thursday, October 24, 2013

10 "In" Verbs: How to Get In and Out by Richie Norton

Do you know someone who seems to "produce" more than the average? Someone who is always on the go and doing amazing things? Why is it that certain people are "in" on everything good that is happening? Richie Norton is one of most "go" and "good" people I know. In addition to writing a best-selling book (The Power of Starting Something Stupid), traveling all over the world sharing his knowledge with others and being a wonderful father and husband, he is an entrepreneur extraordinaire. 

Recently he wrote a post on his blog about the Top 10 "In" Verbs: How to Get In and Out. I loved his IN-sights on how we can be IN-volved in all the good things. Check out his IN-credible advice below, or click here to read it on his blog. While you’re there, sign up to get notifications of all his amazing posts.  Read on and get IN on all the best things in life! (Text and design below (C) Richie Norton from www.richienorton.com .)




10 ways to get “in” on something new (read: improvement) and “out” of something old (read: limited potential)—relationships, habits, thought patterns, circumstance. . .

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Fans Vs Friends

When it really counts, who can you count on?

A few years ago I "met" a reality TV personality via email. I was involved in organizing a charitable event for a friend and the celeb had gone to school with my friend, so he wanted to be involved as well. He sent me an email letting me know he wanted to help. I was rather shocked, but I thought it was great that he wanted to help. We exchanged a series of emails and I actually started to feel like I was getting to know him a little.

He made a small contribution to the cause and then offered to help with the fundraiser. It was hard for me not to "judge" his gift, because I imagine that he could have donated a substantial amount, but I realized that was not the point. He did contribute and he wanted to help. So, I thanked him for his effort and gladly listened to his idea. He started by sending out a message "tweet" to all of his online "fans", offering a personally autographed prize for the fan that sent in the biggest donation.

Friday, September 27, 2013

7 Reasons Hard Work Makes Life Easier

"God sells us all things at the price of labor."

  ~Leonardo da Vinci

For literally hundreds of years, man has been trying to find ways to make life easier. With each new invention, life at home, on the farm, became easier. Today life is "so easy" that we no longer live on farms and grow our own food. Many city children don't even know where their food comes from. And yet, are our lives better than they were in times gone by?

At the end of a day, families used to gather together and eat dinner, followed by a candlelight reading from the old family Bible or a "modern" classic of that time. There was time for hard work, but there was also time for quiet reflection.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

All Sales Final: A Painful Lesson in Decision Making


Can You Fix a Non-Refundable Decision?


A few years ago, I was in need of a dress to wear to a formal event. Hours of shopping left me with no dress and few ideas. Online shopping had the chance to save the day. I scoured websites until I found a beautiful dress, just my style.  I had admired it in the pictures all season. Better still, the dress had gone on sale and was now less than 1/2 of the original price!

Excitedly, I selected my size and placed the item in my shopping cart. I hurried to “check out” so I could guarantee the dress would be mine.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Worlds Apart, We Are the Same


Jogging down memory lane yesterday, I remembered a time in my life when I attended college for a semester in a foreign country, the Holy Land, to be exact. The university was nestled into the rocky terraced hills on Mount Scopus and from my room balcony, the Dome of the Rock and the strong walls of the Old City of Jerusalem were visible. 
Aladdin (al-a-deen),
the money changer

The weathered cobblestone on the narrow streets easily supported the thousands of steps taken by street vendors, shop keepers, locals, tourists and those on religious pilgrimage. 

Hundreds of people packed every small pathway in and out of walled City, and thousands more lined up at the gates to gain entrance. Smells of breads and spices wafted through the air at every turn, piquing the interest of my taste buds.   

The hillsides were more than dirt mounds; they were tels, dry grass-covered knolls sitting atop of ruins of homes, towns and cities of once great glory. Passing by, you could see only a few stones, barely visible. Yet, theywere broken remnants of lives as real as my own.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Boston Marathon: Hope in the Face of Tragedy


Man can live about forty days without food, about three days without water, about eight minutes without air,  but only for one second without hope. -- Author Unknown

We will all remember where we were the moment we heard the news about the bombings at the Boston Marathon. There are a few moments in life, like this one, that are etched in our memories forever. These events are tragic, but they do something that cannot be done in many other ways: they tie us together, help us connect, love and reach out to each other. And, they cause us to ACT. 



Friday, March 22, 2013

Hold Me Accountable for My Stupid Dream

Why is it that the things we most desire to do are often the things we put off doing the most? Richie and Natalie Link Norton explore this idea in their new book, The Power of Starting Something Stupid. (Click HERE to visit their website or go to amazon.com to read great reviews about this #1 selling masterpiece.) While this isn't a book review, I have to admit, the advice in the book did make me examine myself and what I know I REALLY should be doing with my time. Not only is it what I should be doing, it is what I have always wanted to do, so why haven't I done it yet??

The Nortons explore the concept of procrastination in a way I have never thought of before. "Procrastination is the counterproductive act of choosing to postpone doing something important for a later time." Ouch, that hits close to home. Why do we procrastinate the things that mean the most to us, or the things that we really want to do?  

To make it very personal, why have I let fear and procrastination keep me from writing a book when I know in my heart it is my dream and what I want to do??


Friday, November 2, 2012

American Heroes: Meeting Veteran Lyle Green


Meeting Lyle Green

Jodi Orgill Brown

November 2, 2012, Approx 1:30 – 1:50 pm

I met the most amazing man today. I stopped at the Wells Fargo Bank branch in Roy, Utah, and as I was walking into the bank, I noticed an older gentleman walking toward the door, wearing a “U.S. Air Force Veteran” hat.
I looked at him and said, “You are a veteran. Thank you for serving our country.”
He quickly grabbed my hand, shook it, looked me in the eyes and said, “You’re welcome”. He then grabbed out his wallet and pulled out a few laminated photos and showed me a much younger man, in uniform, serving in the Korean War. He flipped through the pictures and said a word or two about each, then placed them back in their appropriate well-worn spot in his wallet.

He asked if I had any family members in the military and I replied that my brother and father-in-law had both served in the U.S. Marine Corps. I told him that one of the proudest days of my life was when I went to Camp Pendleton with my parents, sisters and brothers, and we watched as my brother “graduated” from boot camp and became a United States Marine.  I hardly recognized my brother that day, he had turned from a scrawny kid into a strapping, responsible military man. I smiled at the memory.

I looked at him and said “thank you” again, and he nodded with a look of gratitude. It’s funny because he had a look of thanks, yet I was trying to show my gratitude to him.

He then went to grab the handle of the door for me, but I got there first and opened the door for him.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Surgery Update


Moving Right Along!
I can hardly believe this week is nearly over, and my trip to California and surgery are now in the history books. The first order of business is to thank my Heavenly Father and Savior for yet another series of blessings and prayers answered. The next order of business is to thank all of you, my dear friends and family, for your prayers, fasting, faith and help. It is your prayers on my behalf that were answered this week. Your faith, love and friendship has changed our lives forever.

We have had good friends and neighbors helping our family at home, as well as praying for us in CA. My dear mother-in-law, who stayed with the kids, was blessed by the many helping hands who car-pooled, watched kids, gave rides and helped keep everyone going where they were supposed to be. THANK YOU!

We arrived at Dr. Levine’s office in Beverly Hills on Tuesday morning. I met first with Dr. Narula, an optometrist, who did an eye exam, tested my vision, and dilated my eyes. She was a kind, lovely person and we hit it off immediately. I felt as though we could be dear friends, if given the chance.