“Let’s Talk about It”

Thanks so much for the “Let’s Talk about It” questions at the end of various Ensign articles. We have had some difficulty getting direction in our gospel study sessions each Sunday. These questions have really given our discussion new depth and meaning.

We especially enjoyed discussing the article “These People Shall Be My People: On Changing Wards” (October 1980, p. 16). We are planning to move to the West soon and have had some fears about fitting into a new area. Our discussion helped us prepare for the new experiences we will face.

Eileen Jenkins Independence, Missouri

They created it together

I just read the December 1980 Ensign article “Really, Is It Any Wonder I Love Her?” (p. 17). I really enjoyed it and wanted to let you know of my appreciation.

My husband is so considerate of me. He is very good with the children and can cook and clean as well (or better) than I can. When we brought our new baby home, he took a two-week vacation and ran the house. He takes me out for ice cream sundaes, since he knows how much I like them.

Every time I look at our new baby and my older boy, I feel that everything is worth it. Sitting in the middle of piles of folded clothes, diapers, dirty bibs, and two yelling children, I think I wouldn’t trade it for all the peace and quiet in the world. We created this wonderful mess together!

Susan Pixley APO New York

“Running Away from It All”

I’m sure that every one of us frustrated overweights who read S. Scott Zimmerman’s article, “Running Away from It All” (February 1981, p. 28) would like to personally hug him. How gratifying to have someone finally understand that we are not necessarily lazy, gluttonous, weak-willed, socially unacceptable, emotionally disturbed food-aholics on the brink of physical disintegration!

“Running …” is the most honestly researched, best-written article on the subject I have ever read.

Rhoda H. Hampton Idaho Falls, Idaho

“Running Away from It All” puts a lot of stress on physical exercise, but I think if I had followed its advice a few years ago, I would still be 100 pounds overweight. Any seriously overweight person who tries to exercise fat away without drastically changing his eating habits is in for a lot of disappointment.

Sure I exercise now. But until I got down to a decent weight, I didn’t feel like exercising. Just walking up a flight of stairs had me gasping for breath. And most overweight people are so self-conscious about how they look that they’d feel foolish jogging around the neighborhood.

Even if I had been able to exercise the way the article suggests, I’d still be overweight. When I was 100 pounds overweight, I was eating 3,000 calories a day. To maintain the weight I’ve kept for the past three years, I’ve been eating 1,900 calories a day, plus exercising. If I had simply exercised enough to cut out 2,000 calories a week, I would only have lost a grand total of 20 pounds and stayed there. I’d still be 80 pounds overweight.

Exercise is important for everyone, but I believe that effective weight control must begin with careful attention to diet.

Debra Kidd Zumwalt Kearns, Utah

Birthday gift

Although I am not a member of your church, I am thankful for a friend who gave me the Ensign as a birthday gift. Your magazine gives me great comfort, and many times the articles about marriage and the spiritual and temporal obligations of being a good wife (and someday, a mother) are very enlightening. I feel Heavenly Father is speaking to me through you.

Linda Schofield Syracuse, New York

He knew David Whitmer

As a soldier of World War II who had buried a brother on a jungle beachhead, my postwar service as a missionary was a welcome and beautiful change—from one of destroying life to one of trying to save it. It was simply overwhelming. And then to be laboring in the historically rich area of Jackson County, within the shadow of the fame and shame of Liberty Jail, the sacred hush of Adam-Ondi-Ahman—all seemed to weave a magic spell. Thus it did not seem too unusual to actually meet someone who had known and talked with David Whitmer. My journal tells the following story: The old gentleman we met was not interested in the Church (and I don’t even remember his name), but he invited us into his lonely house on Elm St. in east St. Jo. He had a story to tell.

“So yer Mormons from Utah, are ya?” he began. “I used to know some Mormons once, down in Richmond. In fact, one of ‘em was one of the original band, I believe. Have either of ya ever heerd of David Whitmer?”

“We sure have,” we told him.

“I used ta know ole man Whitmer when I was a lad,” he went on. “Used ta cut across his back lot on m’way to school. And I was at his house the day he died. In fact, there was a right smart gathering there that day. The old gentleman had been ailing for sometime, but once he roused a bit and asked the doctor if he adjudged him (David) to be of right mind. When assured by the physician that he was still of sound intellect, he slowly turned his head and said, ‘I want to verify again before I die that the Book of Mormon is true. I saw the gold plates. The angel of heaven came down and laid them out before our very eyes.’”

Now, after all the other testimonies that may have been given over the past 152 years by or about David Whitmer and his unfaltering testimony of the Book of Mormon, this simple, unsolicited account by an unidentified bystander may also be worthy of note.

Normand D. Laub Beryl, Utah

Family home evening

I thought I should write and tell you that once more the Ensign has been an answer to my prayers. When I needed material for two more family home evening lessons on the Sabbath, I found it in the Ensign, as well as enough material for two other evenings. My twenty-year-old daughter and I live together, and our family home evenings this year have been mostly on self-improvement.

Florence Anderson Kearns, Utah

Long drives with children

Please clarify the suggestion in the June issue, p. 54, that young children be allowed to play or sleep unrestrained in the back seat of a car. Safety authorities and pediatricians recommend that all adults and children use appropriate safety restraining devices while riding in a car.

Our four small children have survived many long trips playing or sleeping while they are seated and restrained properly. We just plan additional rest stops to stretch.

Gayle Bashaw Adams Salt Lake City, Utah