Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Making Service A Way of Life For Your Family

Today, I am pleased to introduce you to Misty, the crafting force behind Creative Itch
and a faithful and enthusiastic participant in Service Boot Camp!
(Now, I know why...)

Take it away, Misty!
I'm so excited to be a part of this wonderful celebration!!  The part of 'The Family: A Proclamation to the World' that I'll be focusing on is this:

"...Parents have a sacred duty to rear their children in love and righteousness, to provide for their physical and spiritual needs, to teach them to love and serve one another...."

I hope you don't mind if I get a little personal here....

A few years ago, our family was going through a rough time financially.  My husband was laid-off of his job in October of 2008, then hired back on with the understanding that his job would end on December 31, 2008.  What little savings we had vanished quickly, helping us pay our bills and buy food for our family to eat.  Although it was a scary time for us, it was also a time when we were blessed beyond measure.  Food showed up on our doorstep, we were given money by an anonymous donor to help buy Christmas gifts for our kids, and we had 'Secret Santas' (2 separate ones) that left boxes of gifts and food on our doorstep.  The service that was rendered to our family during this time was amazing!  And we were so grateful!  We wanted to do something for all of the angels that helped our family, but they wished to remain anonymous.

After the holidays, we decided that we were going to focus on service as a family.  What better way to show our thanks than to "pass it on"?!  We did at least one act of service each month for someone in our ward or community, and tried to do acts of service daily in our little family.  There was such a great spirit in our home!  The kids argued less, and we just enjoyed each other more.

A few weeks into the New Year (2009), we sang "Scatter Sunshine" as the opening hymn in church.  Here's the words, for those of you that aren't familiar with it:

Verse 1:
In a world where sorrow
Ever will be known,
Where are found the needy
And the sad and lone,
How much joy and comfort
You can all bestow,
If you scatter sunshine
Ev'ry-where you go

Verse 2:
Slightest actions often
Meet the sorest needs,
For the world wants daily
Little kindly deeds.
Oh, what care and sorrow
You may help remove,
With your songs and courage,
Sympathy and love.

Verse 3:
When the days are gloomy,
Sing some happy song;
Meet the world's repining
With a courage strong.
Go with faith undaunted
Thru the ills of life;
Scatter smiles and sunshine
O'er its toil and strife.

Scatter sunshine all along your way.
Cheer and bless and brighten
Ev'ry passing day

As I sang that song, I felt the Spirit so strongly!!  This was exactly what we had experienced, and what we were trying to do as a family.  When we got home from church, I shared my feelings with my family, and we decided that "Scatter Sunshine" was going to be our family motto.  We were going to do our best to "cheer and bless and brighten" the lives of those around us by serving them however we could.  My kids have gotten used to me saying "Scatter Sunshine!" whenever they leave home.  We've found that when we're  focused on serving others rather than our own wants or needs, we are happier and seem to have a better spirit in our home.

I made this sign to display in our home of our family motto:

And to brighten your day, I'm going to share my file with all of you!! Just right click on the image and save to your computer!  (for personal use only, please!).

I have a testimony of service.  I'm thankful for those that have rendered service to me and my family, and I'm grateful for the opportunity I have to teach my children to serve others.  I hope we can all try a little harder to "Scatter Sunshine" in our homes and communities!!

Thank you, Misty!

Add your Family Proclamation-inspired CRAFTS to this week's LINK-UP PARTY for a chance to win the following PRIZES!  And read about more sunshine moments over at Chocolate On My Cranium!

Here are the party favors for this week:

I will announce the winners of the following prizes on Sunday!
Custom Family Tree for Kids - 8x10 print
a custom family tree for children displaying four generations of family names
Para Siempre print, LDS Temple font
an 11x14 print of "Para Siempre" using LDS Temple Font
Description:  "Para Siempre", means "Forever". The font is made exclusively of LDS temple parts. This print can be personalized with your family name and established/sealing date." 
by Pseuzyn's Shop

LDS QUAD scripture cover PURPLE, BLACK and GREY

a quad Scripture Cover from To Jameson With Love

a customizable Family Proclamation Photo Album
It includes words from the entire Proclamation...You just insert your own family photos!

I BELONG handstamped baptism necklace

"I Belong" hand-stamped baptism necklace
Description:  "I BELONG 2010 stamped on one inch nickle silver disc. Attached to 24 inch silver plated ball chain. Chain may be cut down to shorter size. This item is designed with creativity and is custom hand stamped especially for you! That is what makes each piece unique." by Just Be Jewelry

Birthday Countdown- balloons

Birthday Countdown Blocks
This item helps you countdown 31 days until a birthday.  Lettering is customizable.

Expandable LDS Temple Tote with outside pocket (Black and White Houndstooth)

Expandable Temple Tote Pattern in PDF 
(There will be 2 Winners of this pattern!!)


  1. sweet idea and so important to teach children to serve...

  2. I just found your blog and I'm so excited to try some of the ideas with my family.
    I was wondering if there is any more need for the journals. I try and do a service project each month with my kids and I thought this would be a good one.
    Thanks! (huffalupagus@aol.com)

  3. Scatter sunshine!! I love it! Thanks for sharing some sunshine today!

  4. What a beautiful song and story! Thanks for sharing Misty!

  5. I love this post. My husband and I went through a similar experience in 08 and had so many kind acts of service especially around Christmas! Thanks for sharing, I love that song!!

  6. That is so great!!! When my twins were little and I was by myself with them a lot, I would often sing that song to them as I fed them breakfast or got them dressed or whatever; mostly as a reminder to me to stay up and not get trapped in my own life. Now that situations have changed and I find myself trapped in my own life, you've reminded me how to get out of the trap! Thank you!!!

  7. Love this! What a great idea. Thanks for sharing your experience and your super cute image:)

  8. ow sweet to share with us all, thanks!

  9. LOVE the print out! Our family has been on the recepient end many times of someone else's service. We try to do the same and "pass it on." My daughters even wanted to name their etsy shop Scatter Sunshine but it was taken so they names it Sprinkle Sunshine instead. :D

  10. what a set of incredible you've given us, including the family theme freebie. how wise you are as a mom. as a family we were never rich in money, but so wealthy in all the other ways of our lives. And there were times when I felt poor, but I had a sweet step dad who reminded me where the wealth really lay. Thank you!

  11. I have been enjoying your blog recently with everything centered on the family. There have been some awesome post. Thanks for doing this; it has been very uplifting to me.
    The post today was great. I think I will work on scattering some Sunshine.
    Blessings to you! LeAnn

  12. I'll never think of Scatter Sunshine the same way again. What a great family motto.

  13. I totally agree, Lara! I'm seeing that hymn in a whole new light now! This is so great!

  14. This would be great on a pillowcase or church tote. Oh the possibilites

  15. I love your post! My family had situations like that growing up. It was amazing how people knew of our situation and just provided what they could without us knowing who. I still wonder who it was. I guess it really was just the Lord providing our needs. I love your sign! It is so clever!