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Hi I'm Joanne

I was born & raised a Mormon in Salt Lake City, Utah. I taught art in public schools for 30 years. I'm still a Mormon.

About Me

I was born to good parents who were married in the Temple. My 3 sisters and I had good educations. We were protected and sheltered and taught the gospel. I was the first in my family to attend a university and I got a degree in art. I have always "sketched". Every time I could get a clean piece of paper and a pencil or crayons, I drew. I am a visual learner and beautiful images always attracted me and held my attention. I keep a sketch book with me most times and have filled many. When my first husband and I moved from Utah, I taught art. in Jr. High school and became mother to 2 little boys. My husband earned 2 degrees but gave up his faith and became hardened to anyone from the Church who tried to fellowship him. We divorced and I took our children back to Utah. I took more art classes and got back into teaching. While teaching I started using colored pencils to create realistic still lifes. I created several of these and joined an organization just for colored pencil. I started exhibiting and winning awards. I married again but that didn't last. I decided to go back to school and get a Masters in art. After Graduate school, I made a series of paintings which were exhibited and many sold. I also got another job teaching art. I am now retired, married a third time and have a business teaching healthy food preparations to those interested in fermented vegetables, sourdough breads and milk kefir. I still love beautiful images and drawing .

Why I am a Mormon

I was raised a Mormon but I chose to be a Mormon or Latter Day Saint at age 27 when I read the Book of Mormon, not for the first time, but for the first time for me. I had read the BOM as parts of lessons all through my childhood and schooling but this time it was for me. . At age 27, I was living with my first husband, teaching art in a public school while he was attending graduate school and I had my old used, Book of Mormon. I just found out I was pregnant with our first child and I decided to find out for myself if the Church was true. I was going to be a mother and responsible for another human being and I had better make up my mind about the church. My husband had given up his faith in God and the Church and I wanted to still work things out. It was summer, I was home not teaching. It took a few afternoons of reading and a few very fervent prayers to know for myself if it was true. I felt the Spirit so powerfully one afternoon, it made me weep with joy and relief. I felt "expanded" and the words in my mind "it's true! it's true!" sounded over and over. I had my answer but I was also sad. I knew it would cause more division between me and my husband. It did. Once I knew the BOM and Church was true, I could not turn back. I gave birth and took my baby back to Church. I accepted Ward callings, I made friends. We moved and I had another baby boy and people tried to fellowship my husband but he went his way and I continued on mine. We eventually divorced and I went back home with 2 little boys. I did not want to be a single woman responsible for 2 small children but that is the situation I chose rather than stay in that marriage. The Spirit had told me not to marry him years before but I was not well acquainted with the workings of the Spirit and I was rebellious and in love. It was the best decision I could have made. My decision to stay faithful in the Church has had rich rewards my whole life. The Gospel just gets better and better.

How I live my faith

I have enjoyed teaching my whole life. I have always accepted callings from my Bishop, to teach. I have taught very young children in nursery, ages 18 mo. to 3 years old and older children ages 3-12 in our Primary. Lessons were always about Jesus Christ, and his life and teachings and about the world created by God for us and about the blessings of family life and about Prophets; in the bible and our current Prophets. I've taught teens and adults also. Right now I am teaching with another woman partner, 3 women in our neighborhood. Once a month we go into their homes and teach a lesson....this year's theme is about the Savior. I am also a cub scout assistant Bear Den Leader and we have 8 boys that we work with but it is more like play. Once a week my husband and I go to our nearest Temple and worship there. Sometimes I go by myself and worship. I also volunteer at a senior care resident facility down the street from us. I teach an art lesson there once a week which is just fun. We do not have television in our home. We gave that up a few years ago. We find we don't miss it. There is plenty to keep us busy and plenty of good reading, of which, the Ensign magazine is one of our pleasures. We read our scriptures together and alone just about every day. We pray together twice or more everyday including prayers over all our meals. We use the internet for study and entertainment and we are getting used to entering family information on Familysearch.org. We like movies but are pretty fussy about which ones we see and visits to theaters are few. We faithfully attend our Ward meetings and pay a full tithe. I love singing and am a member of our ward choir. I like to sing hymns in the morning before scripture reading, it fills my heart with joy. We like to take road trips in our truck and in the winter we love to snowmobile. We also like to store food and water and camping equipment. Once a year we do a "serious" camp-out.

Why is self-reliance important to Mormons? Why do Mormons talk about emergency preparedness?

I love the life of self-reliance. Putting away some food and water and some equipment to keep life going in case of emergency is better than paying for insurance policies. I love gardening; growing, nurturing, harvesting and then preserving some of our own food It is a healthy way of life even in the city or suburbs. We can't grow all the food we consume and so we buy food grown, canned and freeze dried by others to build our supply. From our own store we can better feed ourselves and family in times of trouble. In my own life I have had to rely on my stored resources a few times; when a job was lost, when an ice storm held us captive indoors for 4 days and when a sister's husband left and she needed help. I make most of our meals at home using purchased food, and home preserved and stored food. I have found that cooking from "scratch" most of the time keeps us healthier with very few doctor visits and no prescription drug use. It's a lot of work but the benefits are awesome. We also save money and draw from that reserve in times of emergency. We are out of debt and have our mortgage paid off. Our Prophets have counseled us to do this my whole life. It is wise counsel and we are blessed to have followed that counsel. Being self-reliant is to do all we can to prepare ourselves to meet our needs in times of need but to also rely on the Lord. Both concepts work together. It's a manifestation of our Faith in our Lord. Show more Show less