Tuesday, February 9, 2010

TOFW

(That's short for Time Out For Women, in case you, like me before this weekend, have never been to one of these shin digs.)

And if you haven't been, man alive you better figure out how to get yourself to one because I can't believe how well-run and outstanding this whole event was. I really was in awe.

The first night we missed a couple speakers because we were trying to finagle our arrival, breathe a sigh of relief that we both got there, the whole car rental thing without a driver's license (yes, I lost mine months and months and months ago and still haven't replaced it...), etc. before we left for Ogden.

BUT, we got there in time to hear one of my heroes, Cheiko Okazaki, give her eloquent remarks. Oh man I love that sweet eighty-three-year-old woman most especially for this talk she once gave called "Lighten Up," (it's an excerpt from her book and I have no idea what that blog/site is that I'm linking to...it's just the only place I could find her talk written out).

Then we heard Jenny Oaks Baker play the violin and it seriously makes me tear up even thinking about it all these days later. I promptly bought her newest CD and came home and announced to my family that it would now be our standard Sunday music (as my kids gawked at me since I was all teary-eyed even talking about it) because it is SO beautiful. If you want to hear a little snippet of her playing click here, but be ready to have your eyes well up from the beauty.

Oh man I wish I could play the violin like that!

My Mom and I were the first speakers on Saturday. I really loved it. Of course, I have some things I wish I'd said and I learned a lot for next time, but I must admit it was actually fun to be up there...now that's something I sure didn't think I'd be saying!

I'm a little shabby on the pictures we took, but the one below is of Mariama Kallon (in the middle). She told the story of her youth...how she endured life growing up in war-torn Sierra Leone, witnessing the violent murders of parents and siblings, and then finding the gospel of Jesus Christ and how it changed her life.
Her story inspired the leaders of the event to head up a hygiene -kit-making-project to send to Haiti. I think there were close to 400 kits assembled on Saturday thanks to so many good women.

The above picture is the outstanding orchestrator of the event (on the left) and three of the wonderful speakers (my Mother included).

And here we are with Ardith Kapp along with my "guests" for the event...my two sister-in-laws and my most loyal, sweet friend from high school (on the left). It was so fun to share the day with them. Thanks for coming, guys!

Oh man, I am SO lucky to get to call these guys my parents!

I don't know why I always feel so compelled to take pictures out my airplane window on trips, but I do. Something about the beauty of clouds forces me do it.

What a trip. Now I'm anxious for Spokane in April!
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