Our assignment this week: “Think about those who have had a significant influence in your life.
Besides the Savior, Heavenly Father, and your family, list ten of the most important and influential people in your life. Write the reasons why they are and have been so important to you. Some of these will be people you have known, but some might be people you have only heard of or read about.” (Mary Ellen Edmunds, Peculiar in a Good Way, pg.23)
Give us a list of ten people who have influenced you. They could be authors, musicians, politicians, teachers, friends, etc. Share what you have learned from them, how their influence has made an impact on your life.”
Some of the people on my list were no-brainers, I thought of them immediately. For the others it took some pondering to realize who had had an influence on my life. It’s hard to not mention my own family! So in no particular order here are ten people who have made an impact on my life up to this point.
1. Mrs. Humble, my 8th grade literature teacher. While my parents introduced me to the love of reading, Mrs. Humble introduced me to “the classics” of literature.
2. Corrie Ten Boom. I highly recommend reading The Hiding Place. Ms. Ten Boom is a wonderful example of a true Christian life. She resisted the Nazis in Holland in the best way she could, kept a cheerful attitude even while in a concentration camp, and forgave those who had wronged her and her family.
3. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Mrs. Humble introduced me to my first Longfellow poem, “Paul Revere’s Ride.” The appeal of his poetry for me is that I can share it with my children and they understand and enjoy it.
4. Minerva Teichert. I love her soft, almost wispy, style of painting. She is an example of grit and grace. She raised five children on a ranch in Cokeville, Wyoming and used her living room as her paint studio. We have known two of her grandsons and their families who speak fondly of their grandmother. One family lives here in our ward and has four sons. Is it too much to hope that someday one of my daughters will marry into the Teichert family?
5. Jennifer Bassett, my first piano teacher. I’ll never forget the hug she gave me when I showed up crying to what I thought would be my last piano lesson. My parents couldn’t afford any more. Mrs. Bassett told me a story, “When I was a little girl my parents couldn’t afford my piano lessons either. My piano teacher gave me lessons anyway with the understanding that I would do the same when I grew up and taught piano and some of my students couldn’t afford them. You can still take lessons as long as you promise to do the same when you grow up.” I’ve kept my promise, Mrs. Bassett, several times over.
6. Joseph Haydn. Who can doubt the contributions Haydn has made to classical music? The Creation and The Seasons are sublime to listen to. Hayden is said to have “dressed in his best clothes to compose because he said he was going before his maker.” (Reid Nibley, in Hal Williams, “Dr. Reid Nibley on Acquiring a Taste for Classical Music,” BYU Today, April 1980, 14) Beautiful music makes me weep tears of joy.
7. L.M. Montgomery. I devoured all the Anne novels as a young teenager. My mom, sisters, and I loved watching the movies together. Now my daughters and I have “Anne of Green Gables” movie marathons, the last one taking place just last week as that was Bon Bon’s request for her birthday.
8. Ansel Adams. His black and white photographs are timeless and stunningly beautiful.
9. Karon Carlson, one of my Young Women leaders. One day she took all of us teenage girls to her house where she taught us how to make bread. I still use her recipe every single week to make 8 loaves of homemade white bread for my family. Did she know then that her influence would be felt and even help feed my family years on down the road? Probably didn’t even cross her mind but I think of her every time I make bread.
10. Marjorie Pay Hinckley. I’ll never forget the first time I met Sister Hinckley. Mr. FR and I had been invited to a Hinckley family gathering around Conference time. As we sat and visited with Pres. and Sister Hinckley their children and grandchildren began to arrive. All the grandchildren would come in and immediately look for “grandma.” She would hug each one and ask them personal questions, “How’d your spelling test go yesterday?” “How’s the piano piece coming along for the recital?” Each one received her personal attention and love. I want to be like that – freely giving my love and attention to my children and grandchildren. My motto in life comes from a quote by Sister Hinckley, it’s the one in my sidebar, “The only way to get through life is to laugh your way through it. You either have to laugh or cry. I prefer to laugh. Crying gives me a headache.”
Join us for Wordfull Wednesday. Write a post about today’s assignment, come back here and sign the Mr. Linky leaving the url to your blog post.