How to Minister

eeyore with pooh and christopher robin

It occurred to Pooh and Piglet that they hadn’t heard from Eeyore for several days, so they put on their hats and coats and trotted across the Hundred Acre Wood to Eeyore’s stick house. Inside the house was Eeyore.

“Hello Eeyore,” said Pooh.

“Hello Pooh. Hello Piglet” said Eeyore, in a Glum Sounding Voice

“We just thought we’d check in on you,” said Piglet, “because we hadn’t heard from you, and so we wanted to know if you were okay.”

Eeyore was silent for a moment. “Am I okay?” he asked, eventually. “Well, I don’t know, to be honest. Are any of us really okay? That’s what I ask myself. All I can tell you, Pooh and Piglet, is that right now I feel really rather Sad, and Alone, and Not Much Fun To Be Around At All.

Which is why I haven’t bothered you. Because you wouldn’t want to waste your time hanging out with someone who is Sad, and Alone, and Not Much Fun To Be Around At All, would you now.”

Pooh looked and Piglet, and Piglet looked at Pooh, and they both sat down, one on either side of Eeyore in his stick house.

Eeyore looked at them in surprise. “What are you doing?”

“We’re sitting here with you,” said Pooh, “because we are your friends. And true friends don’t care if someone is feeling Sad, or Alone, or Not Much Fun To Be Around At All. True friends are there for you anyway. And so here we are.”

“Oh,” said Eeyore. “Oh.” And the three of them sat there in silence, and while Pooh and Piglet said nothing at all; somehow, almost imperceptibly, Eeyore started to feel a very tiny little bit better.

Because Pooh and Piglet were There.
No more; no less.


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Be a Life Saver!

2019-1-14 byu fhl (1)I’ve been spending my spare moments at the BYU Family History Library scanning photos and documents on their fast scanners.  It’s fun work, capturing and preserving images and lives.  With all the talk lately about “ministering,” I feel this is one small way I can minister to those who have gone before me.  I owe them such a huge debt.  And I love them.  I want their faces and stories to be known.

Below is a page from my Great-Aunt Elsie Lundquist McNabb’s Book of Remembrance.  She chronicled 13 pages of photos of our family and her friends taken between about 1910 and 1940.  Elsie is a sister to my grandmother, Ruby Lundquist Smuin.  I’ve borrowed these photos and documents from Elsie’s grandson, who will be 70 this year.  These are treasures and I’m grateful to have them for a while to preserve them for the family.2019-1-16 scanning (2)

There are some important pieces of information found in these album pages.  For example, I always wondered if the photo of my Great-grandpa Jacob’s family above was taken at the time of his wife’s death because she’s not in it.  Charlotte died on 1 November 1899 in Fairview, Utah.  The caption below tells me this photo was taken at the family gathering at her funeral.  I love that Aunt Elsie recorded that little piece of information.

bushman, jacob family nov 1899 date

As I scan and document these photos, I’m adding them to the Memories for each person in Family Search.  So far I’ve added more than 3500 Memories to people’s pages there.  More than 800 of those Memories are stories I’ve found, written or compiled with photos and documents about people I’m related to.  It’s hard for me to step away from this work.  I feel compelled to share these stories and histories and photos with anyone who might be interested.  I also post the stories on my Family History Blog, Ann’s Stories found here:

Sid Lieberman, a nationally-acclaimed storyteller came to the Roots Tech Conference in Salt Lake in March 2013. He said, “Everyone has a right to exist.” Then he encouraged us to “be a witness for someone who otherwise would not be known.” To me this means: SAVE A LIFE BY PRESERVING A MEMORY OF SOMEONE.

Another great storyteller, Donald Davis, said  “If we don’t remember someone, it’s as if they never lived.”  This is the kind of life saving I enjoy.  It makes me happy.  I wish each of us would take a little time to save a life, including our own, for future generations.

Here are 3 of my favorite finds in Elsie’s album: this first is a photo taken at my Grandma Ruby’s home in Glendale about 1930.  Ruby is the beauty in the black dress in the middle, holding my mother, Grace.  I LOVE this photo!

lundquist, elsie with friends in glendale

Here is a photo of Ruby’s mother, my Great-grandmother, Grace Honor Bushman Lundquist.  She was the mother of 8 and died at age 38 of pneumonia.   We have very few photos of her.  I’d never seen this one before.  My heart leapt when I found it.lundquist, grace honor bushman b. 1873

And here is an original photo of Grace Honor Bushman Lundquist with some of her children on their front porch in Salt Lake City.   Aunt Elsie is the adorable little girl in the center.  Her sister, Lucille (with the little cap on) died at age 2½ when her clothes caught on fire while she was playing with matches.  What a heart break to lose a daughter so dear.lundquist, grace, lucille, roy, ivan, elsie slc

These photos have enlarged my soul and turned my heart to my ancestors.


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Now the work of Christmas Begins.

when the song of the angels is heard no more

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Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger

ordinary grace

I read this book yesterday and could hardly put it down.  It’s beautifully written and it gave me a lot to think about.  Here’s the review from Goodreads:

From New York Times bestselling author William Kent Krueger comes a brilliant new novel about a young man, a small town, and murder in the summer of 1961.

New Bremen, Minnesota, 1961. The Twins were playing their debut season, ice-cold root beers were at the ready at Halderson’s Drug Store soda counter, and Hot Stuff comic books were a mainstay on every barbershop magazine rack. It was a time of innocence and hope for a country with a new, young president. But for thirteen-year-old Frank Drum it was a summer in which death assumed many forms.

When tragedy unexpectedly comes to call on his family, which includes his Methodist minister father, his passionate, artistic mother, Juilliard-bound older sister, and wise-beyond-his years kid brother, Frank finds himself thrust into an adult world full of secrets, lies, adultery, and betrayal.

On the surface, Ordinary Grace is the story of the murder of a beautiful young woman, a beloved daughter and sister. At heart, it’s the story of what that tragedy does to a boy, his family, and ultimately the fabric of the small town in which he lives. Told from Frank’s perspective forty years after that fateful summer, it is a moving account of a boy standing at the door of his young manhood, trying to understand a world that seems to be falling apart around him. It is an unforgettable novel about discovering the terrible price of wisdom and the enduring grace of God.

At the end of the story, in the epilogue, Frank says this:

“I’m a teacher of history in a high school in Saint Paul and what I know from my studies and from my life is that there is no such thing as a true event. We know dates and times and locations and participants but accounts of what happened depend upon the perspective from which the event is viewed.”

To that I might add, those accounts also depend on the perspective of the person by whom the event was recorded.  I’ve been reading dozens of histories of people, ancestors and their neighbors this last week.  I’m realizing more and more that the person who records history owns that story, or that history.  They have control over what is remembered or even known by others years later.  It’s sometimes a frightening thought, to someone, like me, who writes every day.  I want to get it right without too much of my own slant, but I’m afraid that’s impossible.  I am slant.  So I need to get myself right.

I also loved this closing paragraph of the novel:

“We turn, three men bound by love, by history, by circumstance, and most certainly by the awful grace of God, and together walk a narrow lane where headstones press close all around, reminding me gently of Warren Redstone’s parting wisdom, which I understand now. The dead are never far from us. They’re in our hearts and on our minds and in the end all that separates us from them is a single breath, one final puff of air.”

I feel my beloved family members near, they are just one puff of air away.

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“Even until fifty and nine years had passed away.” 4 Nephi 1:6

Ann Lewis Mission.jpg4 Nephi 1:6 
And thus did the thirty and eighth year pass away, and also the thirty and ninth, and forty and first, and the forty and second, yea, even until forty and nine years had passed away, and also the fifty and first, and the fifty and second; yea, and even until fifty and nine years had passed away.

I recently read this verse in the Book of Mormon and thought, “well that just about sums up my life to this point!”  Today I stand on the outer edge of my 5th decade.  Tomorrow I’ll be 60 years old.  I can hardly comprehend the thought of it, although I’ve been trying to get used to the idea of it for the last several months.  I just haven’t been able to embrace that number.  Sixty is Old.  I am not Old.  I’m going to have to figure this one out.

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Days for Girls Work is a Blessing to So Many!

It has been a joy to step back into our Days for Girls work here in Orem since our return in July.  Every Thursday we gather at Building Q here in Orem (585 East 1200 North) from 10:00 until 2:00.  Women (and a few men) come from far and wide to help us make and assemble hygiene kits.  This week some of our missionaries joined in the fun.  Oh, what a gift they give as they #LightTheWorld!2018-12-6 (1)2018-12-6 (2)2018-12-6 (3)2018-12-6 (4)Melissa Clark and Wendy Barton tirelessly keep the work moving forward.2018-11-28 (14)

This week Anna Monson, a BYU student came to film what we were doing.  Take a look at her video and explanation of Days for Girls.  She did a great job:

We also go on the road from time to time.  This week another of our missionaries invited her Spanish Ward in Provo to join in the fun and help:2018-12-5 DfG Hna Pons Provo Ward (3)2018-12-5 DfG Hna Pons Provo Ward (6)2018-12-5 DfG Hna Pons Provo Ward (7)We assembled more than 500 kits this week.  This is work I am grateful for!

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The Dedication of the BYU Engineering Building and our Son Aaron, the Engineer

2018-12-4 BYU Engineering Bldg (1)We were invited today to attend the dedication of the new Engineering Building at BYU.  Our son, Aaron is a 3rd year Mechanical Engineering student, and he spends a good deal of time in that building.  Elder Bednar spoke and gave a beautiful dedicatory prayer.2018-12-4 BYU Engineering bldg2018-12-4 (2)This quote was in the program:

“Redemption from the ills of the world is dependent on our ability to understand the laws of the universe and to live in conformity therewith. . . . Sin, inefficiency, and disease are merely manifestations of ignorance. The overcoming of these is the triumph of education and the vindication of the power of intelligence.” –Franklin S. Harris at his inauguration as BYU president in 1921

2018-12-4 BYU Engineering Bldg (2)

As he talked about the old coming down and new buildings being constructed, Elder Bednar said, “I pray we always will remember those who have gone before.”  I remembered classes I had in the old Eyring Science Building, which still stands right next to this building.  I loved learning about physical sciences–physics, astronomy and chemistry.  I typed papers and reports on my new electric typewriter that had a correcting ribbon.  Our highest technology then pales compared to what I saw today.

After the dedication, Aaron took us on a tour of this incredible building.2018-12-4 (7)This last year his classes have included Electrical Engineering, Differential Equations, Computing & Numerical Methods, Computer Aided Design, Modeling, Mechatronics, System Dynamic Modeling, Manufacturing Processes and Statistics for Engineers.  Holy Cow, I don’t even know what most of those things are!

Right now he’s working on a semester-long project building a robot. 2018-12-4 (9)

2018-12-4 (12)2018-12-4 (11)Here’s where the robots are tested.  They pick up or shoot balls into specific places.  I’m sure there is a more technical way to describe that!2018-12-4 (13)Here are robot parts and pieces from all the students working on this:2018-12-4 (15)It was amazing to walk through the floors and see all the labs and work areas for students.  Everyone was busy, as this semester is coming to an end and projects are due.  I’m proud of Aaron and his good mind and heart.  He loves what he’s studying and he’s an excellent student.2018-12-4 (16)

The Daily Universe reported, “The building’s construction was possible with the help of $85 million, 100 percent funded by more than 17,000 donors, according to the dedication program.  The building took 27 months to construct and has been operational for three months. It has five floors and is 180,000 square feet total, while the engineering research laboratory has two floors and is 20,000 square feet total.  A feature exclusive to the new building includes Harvey’s Cafe — named in honor of Harvey Fletcher, the first dean of the College of Engineering. The innovation floor also includes prototyping facilities, entrepreneurship infrastructure, student club commons and project labs. Team rooms provide students with a place for collaborative study, and an engineering research laboratory includes access to two wind tunnels, a water tunnel, engine test facilities and combustion reactors.”

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