MAGAZINE ISSUE 02
The theme for this issue of Seek Learning Magazine is Endlessly Creative.
This phrase was inspired by a talk by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf called, "Happiness, Your Heritage" given in October of 2008. In that talk, he states,
"Remember that you are spirit daughters of the most creative Being in the universe. Isn’t it remarkable to think that your very spirits are fashioned by an endlessly creative and eternally compassionate God? ... But to what end were we created? We were created with the express purpose and potential of experiencing a fulness of joy. Our birthright—and the purpose of our great voyage on this earth—is to seek and experience eternal happiness. One of the ways we find this is by creating things."
President Uchtdorf powerfully teaches an important truth in his talk. We are daughters of endlessly creative Heavenly Parents. We can find great joy and fulfillment through our own creativity and expression. As we worked to gather articles and stories about the passion, drive, and beauty of Motherhood and creativity, several unintentional themes emerged.
Randi lives & loves with her husband and five children in the desert of Southern Utah. She has a talent for seeing beauty in the ordinary and is passionate about sharing that with others. Randi’s artwork depicts everyday scenes through the simplicity of lines and focuses on connection between people, nature & God.
Randi can be found via email at: email@example.com
My name is Lovetta Reyes-Cairo and I'm an artist and mother of four boys, two of whom are already in heaven. I graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in Elementary Education and taught elementary school for nine years, doing my own art as a hobby on the side. I have always loved art, and after the death of my second child I began to consider pursuing art more seriously.
I studied at Beaux-Arts Academy until my third child was born with special needs. I am so happy that now I get to do art and take care of my kids at home. For me, art allows for exploration and expression of feelings as few other things can. My work is both personal and universal, often featuring the human figure and symbols to explore concepts of spirituality, love, motherhood, connection, death, and healing.
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Jennie Brown is a wife and mother to three young children. Together, Jennie and her kids love exploring both the city and the mountains—or, really anywhere they can run away together. Jennie loves visual storytelling and has a degree in filmmaking. She has worked as a professional photographer for 5 years, and she especially loves to capture mothers and children. Jennie's other creative interests include cooking, trying not to kill all the flowers in the garden, and she has secret dreams of her next life as a modern dancer.
Jolyn Laney is family photographer with a unique approach to photographing life. She first found a passion for photography as a young mom and has explored and developed it over the years. She found that photographing the unexpected, beautiful moments helped her focus on what was important and helped her love and appreciate the imperfect family moments.
She has practiced the unposed documentary style of family photography exclusively for four years and loves to run and play along with her clients on shoots.
Jolyn is a roller coaster screamer, s'mores every day, planner of play dates, a million tabs open at once, type of gal. She loves her three boys and her dear husband. On most days, she wears leggings, her hair pulled up and is barefoot as often as possible.
Magazine Article Writers
Finding Fulfillment Through Connection
Jenna is the wife to a kind and adventurous husband and the mother to four beautiful children. She is passionate about the power of connection, which has recently grown deeper as her youngest was diagnosed with a medical condition called INAD. Her goal each day is to see God’s goodness and praise Him for it. She decided to homeschool her children after receiving a strong and clear prompting. It is a path that she didn’t think she would ever take, but one that she will be forever grateful that she followed. A few of her favorite things are Jesus, tulips, and dance parties with her family.
Mandy Boyer is a proud mother of 4 beautiful children. She’s been married for 11 years to her best friend and is currently living in Texas during her husband’s orthopedic surgery residency. She received her Bachelor’s Degree from Brigham Young University in Counseling Psychology and Special Education and currently enjoys being a stay-at-home mother and ESL teacher. She is passionate about strengthening her family while also striving to improve herself as a wife, mother, and disciple of Jesus Christ. She's had the privilege of speaking at 2 conferences this past year encouraging other women and families to improve their mindset and find joy in their lives. In her spare time she loves going on family adventures, singing and playing the piano, taking way too many pictures of her children, and eating chips and salsa.
Follow along on Instagram @thestrivingmomma
Honoring Our Creativity
How Refined Sugar Effects Our Mental Health
I’m a homeschooling mum of 6 kids—one whose grown and off doing her own thing and 5 little ones under 8 who keep me on my toes all day long. Our family moved to Utah a couple of years ago from Scotland where we lived for about 10 years after marrying my Scottish husband. We met while I was getting my Masters in English Literature at the University of Edinburgh. I love hiking and anything that involves being outside in the mountains. I’m passionate about learning and researching all I can about education, health and nutrition.
Follow along on Instagram @feasting.in.the.mountains
A Spirit-led, Creative Family Culture
Whitney is a mother of two little wildings, with another due any day. She, her husband, and kiddos currently reside in small town Idaho, living slowly and intentionally in a valley among the rolling hills. Her days are filled with reading books upon books to the little ones and preparing what seems like way too many snacks for two children to possibly require in one day, as she fulfills her dream of mothering and homemaking. She loves handicrafts and making new things to beautiful her home. Nourishing her home and family is her real passion in life.
A Prayer Unto Me: Joyful Music-making at Home
Sarah Fassmann lives in the Pacific Northwest, where she home educates her children, teaches music lessons, and hikes. When she's done, she is probably dreaming of traveling the world with her husband.
Creativity, Reclaiming our Education, and Finding Joy in Motherhood
Claire Ford is a writer and list-maker who can usually be found with a stack of books beside her. She feels most at home among trees and large bodies of water and believes that time outdoors is never wasted time. Her thoughts revolve around the books she wants to read and what food she’s going to eat next. A turning point in her life came when she realized she is an introvert and can live a life that fits her spirit. Claire currently lives in Kansas City with her husband and three children.
Using Our Gifts and Talents in Motherhood
Kyla Ford is a wife, mother, writer, speaker and happiness advocate.
She has created an online community where she encourages women to cultivate joy for happier and healthier relationships through a life centered on Christ.
She is passionate about educating women of their divine purpose and role as daughters of God to inspire, lead and change the world.
She is an advocate for intentional living to discover growth and healing through life’s most difficult circumstances.
She recently returned to school through BYU-Pathway Worldwide to obtain a degree in Marriage and Family Relations.
Although her life is busy, she enjoys creating uplifting and encouraging online content, writing, reading, cooking and traveling with her family.
She has been married for 9 years and lives in Provo, Utah with her husband and 3 children.
Follow along @ajoyfulcommotion
Finding Joy in Ministering
Polly Froelich lives in Carson City, Nevada. She loves the Savior and learning about him. She is a mom to 4 and grandma to 7. She enjoys spending time with her family and hiking in the mountains and playing at Lake Tahoe.
Applying the Savior's Way of Teaching to Family Chores
I’m a passionate mama of 3 (ages 13, 10, and 7). I have a gift for simplifying complicated things and a love for sharing with others what I’ve learned. I created Happy at Homeschool to strengthen the homeschooling parent and create deeper connections at home. I hope to be a constant reminder that in partnership with God, you already have everything you need within you to inspire passion-based learning in your children.
My learning philosophy is rooted in the belief that we as parents have been given the divine stewardship to raise our children in love, safety, and righteousness. I believe that parents are a child’s best teachers and that the home (more specifically alongside family, regardless of location) is the ideal setting for learning and becoming.
I geek out over music, nutrition, natural living, self development, history, spirituality, and all forms of art. INFP/ENFP, depending on my mood. Enneagram 3/9. Let’s be friends!
Heidi is a homeschooling mama to four miracle children; two biological and two adopted. She is an artist and maker, and a voracious reader. She is never happier than when she's out adventuring with her family, unless it's when they all get home from an adventure tired and sunkissed and content to do their own thing for a while so she can paint. She creates scripture study, art journaling and homeschool inspiration. Over five years ago she set a goal to create art every day. She wanted to improve her artistic abilities and make time for something she loved even in the midst of busy days being a homeschool mama. She has only rarely missed a day since! While her abilities have definitely improved with practice, the most surprising element of this project has been feeling like she found who she is and who God designed her to be. She is an artist, an art teacher, a designer and creative business owner, but she is also just a regular person, seeking to add joy and depth to her life by slowing down and making creativity a priority.
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Brittany Hixson is a wife to one and mother to three living in the mountains of Utah. She is passionate about spending time outside and traveling anywhere she can as often as she can. She loves books, Korean dramas, and reorganizing closets. After graduating with a BFA in photography from BYU she began homeschooling her oldest son and has been teaching her children from home ever since. Today she realized there are no current photographs of her without children in them.
Written on Their Hearts
Sacrifices Made in Christ's Name
Cosette is the fifth of eight children and has lived in Utah her whole life. She loves her family and the adventures they go on together. She enjoys traveling and exploring new cultures but prefers spending time at home. She is currently a Freshman at BYU studying Dietetics.
A Family That Lasts
Susie is the mother of three rambunctious boys and the wife of one dashingly goofy husband. They are homeschool enthusiasts and relish the ample time for reading and adventuring that the homeschool life allows. Susie has a master’s degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) and has taught English in various countries over the last 12 years. Currently, she teaches business communications and public speaking at BYU. Susie’s primary ambition is to create a unified and loving family culture.
Instagram: @sequoiafamilies or @susiemcgann
Principles to Remember
Sally and her sweetheart Maynard are the parents of eight daughters and four sons and have 50 grandchildren. She and her husband are passionate about eternal families and raising their family to be “First and Firmest to Follow the Lord’s Living Prophet” in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Sally has been blessed to be a full-time mother in their home for 47 years. She loves to go on bike rides with her husband, gather her family together, and make music in her home. She cheers on parents by presenting at BYU Education Week, speaking at firesides, and in personal conversations. In 2011 she was the Utah Mother of the Year and has had unique opportunities to continually encourage mothers and families. Sally delights to share her love of the Lord Jesus Christ with others and witnesses that those who strive to hear His voice and do His will, will have joy and happiness in this life and eternal life in the world to come.
Graceann is the oldest of 8 children and has wanted to be a teacher from a young age. This young love of teaching drove her to pursue a degree in Early Childhood Education from BYU and then a Masters in Education from Texas A&M. She is passionate about homeschooling because of her experiences in the classroom. There is no better place to teach children then in the home, which is why she wants to make that easier for everyone to do. Although her life is busy with four young children, seeing them engage with, explore and learn about the world around them is one of her greatest joys! Graceann is a co-founder of Seek Learning Home and creator of Christlike Attributes Values Study. She is a Homeschool Mentor, helping mothers get started in their homeschool journey. She has been married for 9 years and lives in Arizona with her husband and 4 children.
Instagram: @creatingaheavenlyhaven & @seeklearninghome
Mothering God's Children
5 Ways to Incorporate Family History into Learning History
Shenley was inspired to love family history when her mom told her stories and helped her diagram her family tree when she was a child. Since then, she has spent many hours researching, interviewing relatives, digging through old boxes and records and sharing what she has learned.
While homeschooling their 3 children Shenley and her husband, Brett, incorporate family history as much as possible. She has taught children’s family history classes and strives to inspire her family, friends and now everyone to love family history. As the founder of inspirefamilyhistory.com
her goal is to help parents have the tools they need to inspire their children to love family history.
Besides doing family history Shenley enjoys being in the mountains, playing tennis, baking and reading
Katrina grew up in the west (Arizona and Utah) and now resides in Georgia, but don't write that down because her husband is in the Air Force and they won't be there for long. She loves learning about anything related to child development, education, and playing. She studied Family and Consumer Science Education at BYU and taught foods to junior high students for a year. You'll usually find her reading a book with her two girls or herself, experimenting in the kitchen, playing a board game with her family or in her sewing room. She loves her two girls (7 and 3) fiercely and can't wait for another little one to join their family.
Out of the Best Books
Becky Pitcher grew up in Minnesota. She studied writing at BYU with a focused interest in children’s literature. She has been passionate about home education since before she had children. She now educates her four children in the home so she can read them all the books she loves! They try to spend the majority of their time reading books, reciting poetry or hiking in the mountains. She is a writer, speaker, and manic hobbyist. (Quilting, knitting, photography, design, baking- but never cleaning.) She is the co-creator of Seek Learning Home and Editor of Seek Learning Magazine. Becky is doing all she can to help women feel confident in teaching in Christ-Centered homes.
Cultivating an Artistic Life
Lindsey is now living one of her husband's dreams that has become my own. Homeschooling and living in the country. THey bought a little farm in Southern Oregon with a pond out back and a little barn with a pig and chickens out front. Her favorite thing is a giant redwood tree with a tire swing that she can see her children playing on from the window. Seeing her children become more wild+free and getting in touch with my own inner child thru the process has been priceless.
Lindsey is a cosmetologist, photographer and artist. She loves to create things and make her home a beautiful peaceful haven. She loves connecting to Heavenly Father in nature and has recently found a new hobby in nature journaling. She loves poetry and anything that makes her think and feel.
Of homeschooling she says, "I take my thoughts to the Lord about our school day then step forward and follow where it flows too. It's in the unexpected beautiful moments I couldn't have planned that I find the most satisfaction and joy while educating my children."
Creativity Required: Special Needs Parenting
Motherhood: My Eternal Identity
Bailey is a proud #boymom living in the Bay Area. She studied Information Systems at BYU and worked as a web-developer with Ancestry for 6.5 years. She started @latterdayfamily while striving to be more intentional in building a Christ-centered home, and helps other families all over the world do the same. Bailey loves sunshine, traditions (especially the nightly smoothie her amazing husband makes), playing sports, and her family.
Follow along @latterdayfamily
From One Grace to Another
Mary Taylor is a mother to three and lives in Surprise, AZ. She loves making Beef Wellington’s and Halloween Costumes. When she’s not following her 3 toddlers around with a broom and rag she enjoys playing outside. Her faith in the Savior helps her stay grounded and give her hope for a brighter tomorrow.
She is Mexican-American, lived in Mexico City for 3 years where she attended high school. She graduated from BYU in Latin-American Studies, but only after she had completed one semester in Spain, France and Hawaii. She loves spending time with her family traveling, learning, reading good books, spending time in nature, dancing and is always looking for an adventure. She is married to Justin Vance and lives in Sparks, Nevada where they have homeschooled their kids for the past 7 years. One year her family decided to buy a giant white van and travel across the entire country from Nevada to Boston, Massachusetts; it was an adventure. She speaks French and Spanish fluently; plays the violin and piano but if you ask her to play any sports she is horrible. In her dream life she would be traveling around the world with her family, spending most of her time barefoot on the beach, reading good books and eating good food.
The Importance of Personal Progression in Motherhood
I am Kristy Virgin a mother of eight children ages 25 to 5 and 2 grandchildren. One in heaven waiting to meet us all. I dabble in a lot of things as I love to learn. Motherhood has been my most rewarding title yet. I feel my divine stewardship and that gives me confidence. Confidence that the Lord is with me and His grace is over me as try to raise the children I have been blessed with.
I love homeschooling and all things books. Building a home library is my passion. I write poetry on whims ever since I was a teenager. I love all things homemaking: sewing, cooking, planting, arts, healthy living and family connections and fun. Rearing and raising my children in truth and light is my passion, my divine calling and role. It’s the thing that fulfills me.
Power in Morning Devotional