Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Self-Reliance Tip of the Week - Cha Cha Cha Check It Out!

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There is so much more to this power kitty than meets the eye....

Many readers might remember the cute little cheesy commercials for Chia Pets. I am sure I wouldn't have to dig too far to find out who invented it. It might be a little harder find to figure out WHY they invented it. That is neither here nor there. Chia has so much more to offer us than visual enjoyment or a little chuckle, because lets face it....they look a little rasta! :) Let's take a closer look at our old friend in a new way. 


Why would chia seed be considered a super food? Well, because of all the amazing components stuffed into one tiny seed! Check it out one ounce of seed contains: 

  • Fiber: 11 grams.
  • Protein: 4 grams.
  • Fat: 9 grams (5 of which are Omega-3s).
  • Calcium: 18% of the RDA.
  • Manganese: 30% of the RDA.
  • Magnesium: 30% of the RDA.
  • Phosphorus: 27% of the RDA.
  • They also contain a decent amount of Zinc, Vitamin B3 (Niacin), Potassium, Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) and Vitamin B2.
Many people tout that it is a weight loss food because of its low calories. I have never been one to say that all "calories are created equal", because frankly they aren't. No one could convince me that 100 calories of Pringles chips could give me the same nutrition as an ounce of chia seed ( which, to be fair an ounce of chia seed is technically 101 calories). Several studies have been done and they don't support the weight loss story, but other things were happening in the body.

  • When type 2 diabetics had 37 grams of chia over a 12 week period (when compared to wheat bran) blood pressure came down
  • Bones need calcium, magnesium and phosphorus to assimilate the calcium. Chia's got it.
  • The omega 3's are good for your brain (ALA) - and are more than half the total fat of this amazing little grain. Wheat doesn't have that. Flax and chia are the only grains to have omega 3's, other top sources are fish or seal (arf arf) (the DHA kind of omega 3's that fish have are best for you, but may not always be available for use in food storage).
  • They are high in antioxidants which prevent cell damage. Supplements can't touch this because they aren't a whole food. Chia is.

Chia seeds can be stored for up to five years (vacuum sealed). That is pretty amazing considering the (healthy) fat content. It is no wonder that the Aztecs and Mayans revered this little beauty. I throw chia into all kinds of stuff. Because they have a neutral taste, they can be hidden into just about anything. My kids love them in Peanut Butter Breakfast Balls (recipe here: 

Chia seeds can be kind of expensive, but they would be a great addition to grains you've stored. I have seen them at Wal-Mart and they can also be purchased here:

So, from now on, when you think of Chia pets, remember to grab some chia seeds. They are much more valuable than a white elephant gift. 

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Self-Reliance Tip of the Week - Pain and Panic

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Pain and Panic...(in the voice of Bobcat Goldthwait) We really are your friends!

Disney made a movie 18 years ago called "Hercules". It is their goofy take on the aforementioned mythological character. My two favorite characters are the minions of Hades, Pain and Panic. They are almost always sent to do the dirty work. They often like to appear to be something different, like a soft cuddly bunny and a cute chipmunk to deceive those who are around them. My favorite part is when they get in trouble for wearing the merchandise of the now famous Hercules. It is a good thing these things don't really exist...or do they?

In reality, pain and panic do like to appear to be something different than they really are. Some people think when they panic and run around like a chicken about to be prepared for dinner, that they are being productive. Not so. Painpanicfear, frustrationdiscouragement, overwhelm and all other emotions that fall into the same category belong to the author of lies. How can we avoid them?

Luckily, we have some amazing people on our team. Here is what Elder Jeffry R. Holland said: 

"We know for certain that if and when everything else in the latter days is down or dying; if governments, economies, industries, and institutions crumble; if societies and cultures become a quagmire of chaos and insecurity, nevertheless, through it all the gospel of Jesus Christ and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that bears that gospel to the world will stand triumphant. It will stand undefiled in God’s hand until the very Son of God Himself comes to rule and reign as Lord of lords and King of kings. Nothing is more certain in this world. Nothing is more sure."
-Jeffrey R. Holland

So, how do we prevent the pain and panic and live in the "we will stand triumphant" in the craziness of today's world?

I found this Ensign article written by William G. Hartly that is 14 years old. It is LOADED with some crazy cool information that we all could learn from. 

  • Lesson 1: When we ignore preparedness counsel, we can expect unhappy consequences.

Before leaving Nauvoo, members had Church-published lists of what to take with them. But when the first companies left in February 1846, several hundred members panicked and crossed the Mississippi River without proper clothes, food, or shelter. As a result, they brought suffering upon themselves, slowed down others, and drained resources from those properly prepared.

I'll give you an example of this. When it is the night before Halloween and people decide that now is the time to get their costumes, Wal-mart is raided. There is:
  • no selection and
  • a huge mess
  • grumpy irritated a huge rush for the last Iron Man costume....
Solution: Halloween costumes come out almost right after Easter, why would they wait until the night before when they surely won't get the costume they wanted? Plan ahead and avoid the rush andpanic :)

  • Lesson 2: Protect against nature.
Trail death tolls reveal that the highest numbers of deaths were among infants and the elderly. Some pioneers became cold and wet because wagon covers and tents were not waterproof. Others suffered sunburns when they lost their hats. Their lips chapped from the dry air, wind, and sun. Many suffered diarrhea and lacked medicine to stop it. Some travelers, while dressed properly for summer heat, lacked coats and gloves for the cold mountain temperatures experienced before reaching the Salt Lake Valley. In addition, pioneers had to guard against wildlife, particularly snakes and wolves. In many campsites they suffered from swarms of mosquitoes that badly hurt children and angered horses and cattle.

We cannot prepare for everything, I totally get that. However, these few simple things like hatslip balmcoatsgloves,sunscreenwinter clothing, bug repellent and a waterproof tent/ wagon would have prevented some of the pain they experienced...and even prevented the death of some people.

One Final Lesson

Along with all of the practical lessons history teaches, one more lesson comes through: maintain good attitudes during troubled times. A sense of humor is like salve on a wound.
On 6 April 1846 about 2,000 Saints with about 400 covered wagons were bogging down in Iowa rains and mud, trying to reach campsites beside Locust Creek. “I was in the rain all day,” President Young noted in his diary, “arranging the wagons, pitching tents, chopping wood until all were comfortable.” That dreary day most members had good excuses to feel miserable. However, Patty Sessions noted in her diary that “[Brother] Brigham came up with his company driving his team in the rain and mud up to his kne[e]s as happy as a king.”

My family and my brother's family wanted to go to Arivipa Canyon for July 4th weekend. We camped in Eden the night before...not the best idea ever because it was so DARN-TOOTIN' hot! I had many thoughts and feelings of the family of Lehi and Nephi while there because...they lived this for 8 years! It was easy to grumble and get cranky because, well, it wasn't as fun as we had hoped. While we couldn't do anything about the heat, the idea crossed my mind to make up new words to "I Love The Mountains" - and it went like this (ahem): 

I love the desert
I love the blazing heat
I love the beetles (they were really loud)
I might just want to eat
I love to sweat just like a slippery pig...boom -de-adda- boom-de- adda- boom-de-adda boom-de-aye

It really was amazing how quickly a little silly song could lift spirits and change the feelings about the situation. In the morning we came to the July 4th breakfast and listened to Bro. Cluff...the frustrations of the night quickly faded and we remembered how lucky we were to live in America. Thanks Bro. Cluff. You're my hero.

I really would like to encourage you to read this Ensign article by Bro. Hartley. There is so much more in it that I haven't covered. There really is some excellent words of advice. Pain and Panic are not our friends. They do not help us in any way. No matter their disguise, they will always hurt us. When we live as Elder Holland described in his quote above as the Church will go forth, it will be "undefiled". If Elder Holland is on our team, we must choose to be on the Lord's team. If we live as such and listen to the voice of the prophets and follow their counsel, we will not be lead astray. Here's a link to "Sturdy Shoes and a Waterproof Tent" 

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Self-Reliance Tip of the Week - For The Record

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Isn't she cute? She's amazing too...

In preparation for Trek, I tried to read as much as I could about many of my ancestors. Since we were going to be treking "for" one of them, I figured I better learn as much as I could. I read and taught my Trek kids mostly from my Tenney family heritage (thanks to a book Sister Kathy lent to me). I've since been branching more out because I JUST CAN'T STOP! Family History is like a can of Pringles...once you pop, you can't stop! I just want MORE!!! I am so grateful for Family Search ( because cousins I didn't even know I had add more stories and pictures all the time and it is just SO STINKIN' EXCITING!

While I was listening to an oral history of some of my great (in more than one way) Madsen aunts and uncles (it was a birthday present for my Great Grandfather in 1978), I was so impressed that they had so many fond memories of being kids during The Great Depression. One of my uncles mentioned that they would milk several cows every day (even the girls did) and they were so rich because they could go get a check after two weeks for a whole $20. He mentioned that $20 was a large sum of money in those days and didn't realize what bills had to be payed with that amount. While listening to the radio this morning, I heard an ad about the "Radio Supper Club" and that you can buy dinner for two for $20. Times sure have changed haven't they?

What does reading and listening to records have to do with self-reliance? If someone had not taken the time to record these things, I would not have them. If I didn't know the hard things my ancestors went through, survived and were very happy despite the lack of funds (or what ever) - how would I know I can too? If I am ever called to go through similar trials, I can learn how they put their faith in action and made it work.

Here are some things I've learned while diving into this amaz-ilicious treasure trove:

  • Home-made music lifts the soul
  • It doesn't hurt the children to work hard too
  • When brothers and sisters can play together (kick the can, run sheepy run, the good ol' fashioned play house and dress up) it creates lasting bonds
  • Family traditions are so important to children
  • Parents can make even the most scant Christmases magical (it is all in the attitude)

These really are only a few. 

When my GGGG Aunt Betsy Jane Tenney sat down to write a brief history of her life, little did she know that her record would be one of only a few we would be able to find about her parents and their trials. She was the Relief Society President at the time in her ward. They were building the church building and would put her record in a vault to be opened long after her death. In 1930 that building was torn down and the record given to one of her daughters. This record has the most amazing story that has affected my life and blessed countless people. When their family reached Winter Quarters my GGG Grandfather William Tenney passed away. Two of his children would die there also. My GGG Grandmother Eliza was heartbroken. She felt she couldn't go to Zion without them. So Betsy Jane with her family, brother Warren and Mother Eliza moved to Quincy Illinois to live for a time. Betsy's son became so sick he was close to death. She asked her brother to administer to him and give him a blessing, but he didn't have the priesthood. As Betsy prayed, she told Heavenly Father that there was no one to administer to him and she was scared for his life. If he could be healed, she knew they were to make the trek west to be with the saints. The Holy Ghost told her what to do. He recovered more every day. Betsy knew what she must do. She worked for two years to earn enough for two wagons so they could go. Her choices changed my life. I'm so glad to have that record. 

I encourage you to be the record keepers for your family. When we take just a short amount of time to record these things, it could strengthen the testimony of your GGGG grand nieces and nephews. That's pretty amazing if you ask me.