Sunday, November 15, 2015

The Hazards of Buying A Cute Notebook

In an impulsive moment of desiring to be more productive and organized with my life, I wandered down the office supply aisle at Wal-Mart. It was then I found an adorable spiral-bound notebook with anchors on it that screamed my name. 

I proudly brought it home *after purchasing it*, eager to fill its pages with great plans and deep inspired thoughts and acquired wisdom...only to realize I had....none of the above. Just as I was trudging through my thoughts, trying to form anything worthy enough for the first entry in my new, cute notebook, I got an email from my friend Megan, the Young Women President:

Hey Ladies! Be thinking about ideas for Young Women in Excellence for our meeting tonight! See you there! 

My face lit up with pen in hand as Megan had just unknowingly given me the perfect writing prompt for the first entry in my new, cute notebook. May I offer some life advice and tell you how effective a cute notebook is in bringing out some great ideas. The notebook was begging to have its pages filled, and I was anxious to fill each page with any hint of an idea that came to me. 

Earlier in the year, for New Beginnings, we had a cruise ship theme because this year's Mutual Theme is "Oh ye that embark in the service of God." So we set sail, making our way to all the different values, beginning our journey in the service of God.

Through a series of group brainstorming, much editing and the evolution of many ideas, we decided to close our year of service pretending to be on an airplane on our way home from the journey we started at the beginning of the year. A big thanks to my little notebook because its filled pages led me to appear to be the most suitable leader to orchestrate the evening which is how I was put in charge of Young Women in Excellence this year. 

Cute notebooks should come with a warning label.
We had a mutual activity where we took the girls to the Ogden Temple to get their picture taken which ended up being their souvenir from the evening. We wrote each girl a note on a "postcard" that we attached to the back of their picture telling them what we admired about them from the past year.

We also set up a "You Are Here" board where each value was a different continent. The girls pinned their names onto the value color that they felt best represented them this year. 

We had each girl bring a suitcase for her display filled with different things that represented her journey from the year. The girls did an awesome job filling their suitcases with really neat, meaningful things!

And then we had our "In-flight magazine" which was our program for the evening. The invitations were tickets, but I don't think we got a picture of those. 
We split the gym in half and had everyone enter into the "terminal" first. The terminal is where we had the "You Are Here" board, the "Baggage Check" for their displays and a bunch of chairs set up in circles to look terminal-ish.

At promptly 7:05, one of the leaders got on the microphone in another room, so you couldn't see her and it sounded like an intercom and notified everyone it was time to board the plane. We ushered all our passengers through the partly opened partition into the plane area.

As the passengers sat down, two of the flight attendants handed out water bottles on a cart from the kitchen. We had blocked off this half of the gym with the free standing white boards so it felt more plane shaped. We drew windows on the whiteboards which was one of my favorite touches.
We had two of our young women dressed with the rest of the leaders as flight attendants. I wrote up a script for them to get us through the program:

Kaelee: Welcome aboard Clinton Airlines Flight 22! Please be sure to stow any loose articles underneath your seat and to turn all electronic devices to airplane mode.

Makenna: The engine is having some minor technical difficulties. As the mechanic looks into that, let’s sing "I'll Go Where You Want Me To Go" with ______________________ playing the piano and ___________________________ leading the music. Then __________________________ will say a little prayer for us and hopefully we’ll be ready for takeoff.

Opening Song:
Opening Prayer:

Kaelee: Okay passengers. We are moments away from takeoff. Should we experience turbulence, engine failure or a crash landing, _____________________ will lead us in reciting the words we should tell ourselves to overcome such emergency.

YW Theme:

Makenna: We would like to turn your attention to the fasten seatbelt sign.
We are ready for takeoff. Many of us aboard this flight began our travels on a cruise ship at the beginning of the year. That cruise helped us embark on a yearlong journey of serving God.
Kaelee: On this journey, we have climbed the White Mountains of Faith, been snorkeling in the deep blue waters of Divine Nature, graced the green gardens of Good Works, and even explored the gold, sandy beaches of Virtue.
Makenna: If you will now turn your attention to the screen in front of you, a few of your fellow passengers have offered to share some of their pictures and experiences from their travels. A big thank you to Nicole Curtner for putting the slideshow together.
Kaelee: First, _____________________ will tell us about her experience this year at mutual activities, and then as the slideshow directs,_________________ will share her experience at girl’s camp, _____________________ will tell us about Youth Conference. And ______________________ will share her experience at Laurel Legacy.


Kaelee: As we have visited different locations on our spiritual journey, we received stamps in our passports. ______________________ will now share with us the kinds of activities we did to earn stamps.

Makenna: The captain has just notified me that we have a few passengers aboard who received all the stamps in their passports and have earned their wings! Would the following passengers please come forward?

Kaelee: It is now time for us to offer you some in-flight entertainment. Please direct your attention to the screen for a special premier of “Flightline."


Makenna: I am happy to report that we are approaching our destination. As we settle in for a smooth landing, we will have our head flight attendant offer further instruction followed by a musical number from all the young women and a closing prayer by __________________.
We turned their temple pictures into postcards and had them write a letter to their parents including their testimony. We also had them write a post card about the value that best represents them and why. We strung those postcards up along the partition with clothespins and twine which you can see a little bit in the picture above.

As luck would have it, this evening was on my mom's birthday! In the afternoon, I texted my mom to see if she happened to have any evening birthday plans. She was just headed out the door to come up my way for lunch with her sister, so I told her to grab her church clothes and stick around through the evening. It was fun to have my mom watch this production I had been working so hard on. Plus she made a pretty great photographer for us which was an extra bonus!
Here's the 15-minute video I put together for our in-flight entertainment. It will admittedly be boring for those who don't directly know the girls in the video, but if you want to see something funny, watch the first minute of it where I pretend to be a reporter and forever confirmed the best decision of my life which was to never attempt to become a professional journalist.

It was a fun night that nearly killed me. But now that we're on the other side of it, sigh of relief, hallelujah, and I'm never buying another notebook again.


LC said...

You are SO creative. This is just darling and perfect. Also I think you did a great job as reporter!

Rebecca said...

Hahaha! I love it! Flightline was amazing! Your reporting was top-notch! "And these extraordinary teenagers walk the very same streets as you and I." Ha! This could not have been any cuter or well-done. I wish I had gotten an invite to be there!

Kim said...

I am so happy you invited me to be a part of your evening. You did such an amazing job!! Everyone played their parts well in carrying out the theme to perfection. Cute and spiritual. I came away very uplifted. Super job!!