Latter-Day Saint Young Women Blog

Want to know what's new on the LDS-YW website? Want detailed instructions on how to make crafts for YW? Want links to leader resources and fun, fresh, new activity ideas? Then you've come to the right place!

This blog is not produced, endorsed, or approved by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


2012 Mutual Theme Resources from the Church

The Church now has on the website the "official Church resources" for the 2012 Mutual Theme.  Some highlights include:
*A message from Elder L. Tom Perry
*Strength of Youth videos for YM & YW and for all youth.
*Logo's (graphics) you can use for activity posters and t-shirts (bottom of the page under Downloadable Resources).
Get to know this website and all it has to offer.  USE these media resources often in your lessons, activities, etc...

Have fun planning 2012.  It will be a great year indeed!


2012 Mutual Theme *VINYL DECALS*

The wait is over!!  Our vinyl decals for the 2012 mutual theme are now available!!  Order your decals here!!

The orange example that says Arise and Shine Forth is shown on an 8 inch glass block, using a 6.75 inch decal - which you can order here (decal only).  There are lights in the block, but they are hard to see in the picture.  We used battery powered LED lights, so they do not have to be plugged in - which comes in handy for girls camp night devotionals (hint hint).
How to make glass block:  Simple apply vinyl to a glass block.
For lights - before applying vinyl, drill a hole in the back of the block with a drill bit made for drilling in glass, using water.   If you don't know how to do this, please have someone who knows help you!  If not you will end up with broken glass everywhere!

Our yellow decal is shown on an etched glass jar (it is better to buy a NON-ETCHED jar, apply decal, then etch the jar with etching/frosting glass spray).  The vinyl has a harder time sticking to already etched items.
How to make etched jar: Find a glass jar (with or without lid...I bought mine at IKEA).  Apply decal.  Spray entire jar with etching/frosting spray - 2-3 light layers of spray work best.  Done!

Ideas on how to use these decals: fill the glass jar with butterscotch candies (they look like little suns), make glass jar lanterns with the decals, use them on notebook covers, order the KIT (wood and vinyl) from our website for a wall hanging.  More ideas to come.....


It's OK to have blogs

Recently, I have heard many rumors saying that the Church did not want us to have blogs.  Every time I would hear this - I would literally cringe a little.  I know several wards who have YW and RS blogs to announce activities, classes, reminders, etc... they have actually closed these blogs due to the RUMORS about the church not wanting us to have them.  Yes - they do want us to take full advantage of the official church website calendars for our wards, but blogging does not take away from this - or at least shouldn't.  And everyone knows how important it is to use our time wisely - and not spend too much of it in front of a computer (or on a handheld device) doing nothing (a.k.a. blog hopping....I am as guilty as the next person for blog hopping, but I do limit myself to 10-20 minutes a day).

Today - I found an article FROM THE CHURCH WEBSITE that encourages us to blog.  Yes - you heard that right - not only do they want us to blog, but they encourage it!  You can all rest easy now.  Here is the article about it.  Happy blogging!

*NEW* For the Strength of Youth booklet

The Church has recently revised the For the Strength of Youth pamphlet/booklet.

Today (Dec 2, 2011), launched a newly updated version of For the Strength of Youth that addresses issues and challenges youth face today that were not specifically addressed in the previous version of the booklet.

“The standards have not changed, but times have changed,” said Young Women general president Elaine S. Dalton, explaining the update. “For the Strength of Youth has been revised to address the issues youth face today—to teach them the doctrine behind the standards and the promised blessings of obedience.”
For the Strength of Youth was last updated in 2001. The revised pamphlet will contain the addition of current prophetic counsel in areas such as the wise use of technology, virtuous thoughts, dating, the importance of gender roles, and preparation for the future.  READ MORE....


YWIE - Personal Progress Showcase

For our Young Women in Excellence night, we did a Personal Progress Showcase.  We wanted an evening where EVERY single girl was noticed and spotlighted for her work in Personal Progress during 2011.  When you have a ward with roughly 40 YW, it is impossible to take the time for each girl to get up and tell us what she worked on during the year.

This is what we did and how we pulled it off:

3-4 weeks before the event, we told the girls that each of them needed to make a display about what they had done this year in PP (for those girls who hadn't done anything in PP or for new YW - they made a display just about them).  This display could be anything from a picture of them holding a baby (if they served a young mother) to a display of their dance attire.  At first all of them weren't too keen on the idea.  I even heard a few of them whisper "homework for church?!!?".  How I answered that.... "Absolutely!"
We instructed the girls on what they needed to do.  We even encouraged them to take a quiet moment and ask Heavenly Father to help her know what she could display and how to display it.  I think this is what made the difference.
We invited the entire ward to this Personal Progress Showcase (we started announcing and hanging up posters about it 3 weeks before the event).  We wanted to show off our YW to everybody - and made sure everyone knew about it!  We made sure that each young woman got a personalized invitation, as well as the Activity Days girls, and the single, and senior couples in our ward. I heard a dad of an Activity Days girl say "My daughter was so excited to come because she got her very own invitation with her name on it".  This may seem like a small thing - but it was HUGE to have these invitations.
That night, we started at 6 pm - this is when the YW came to set up their displays.  We had every small table from every classroom in the gym - we even had a few long tables - for the displays.  We had name tags made for each girl to put with their display.

We partially closed one set of dividers to somewhat close off a part of the gym, which we used for refreshments, and chairs, and a slide show video of the year in review thru pictures.  This way, they could eat treats while watching the video.

We hung a banner on the dividers for YWIE.  (You can purchase one of these banners here.)

Once the displays were all set up (it really didn't take long), we let the YW walk around the displays and watch the video, so the YW would have a chance to see them before the "showcase" started.  Then we opened the meeting at 7 pm.  This was just the YW - opening song (we sang Guardians of Virtue), prayer, and a 5 minute comment from our amazing Bishop.  Then ward members started to arrive at 7:15.  The YW went and stood by their displays, and answered questions, played music they had learned, gave food samples they had cooked, etc.
It was an amazing night - and we had so much ward support!!  The displays were so unique and creative for each young woman and what she was working on.  One of the best YWIE I have ever been to.

Ward members walking around the Personal Progress Showcase:

Some of the fun we had and an example of the variety of displays that we had:
**YW loving the YM who supported them
**A piano
**Musical Instruments and Scriptures
**Food samples being served


Coolest YW torch ever!!

I just bought a metal nativity scene from a company here locally (Bishop Built).  I love their products - especially since my home is metal based - I have a metal kitchen table, a big metal clock (also from Bishop Built), my chairs and bar stools have metal on them - I just love the look of metal in my home.
While I was oogling over the nativity set at a local boutique, I noticed they had a YW torch made of metal - well, I had to get one!!  I brought it home, and my 13 year old daughter immediately said, "I call it for my room!!". Oh really?  Yes, she's got it.
I thought - this would be a fun addition to a table display at various YW events, or even for Sunday's during opening exercises.  I think if you put a card in the spiral holder for the value of the month, or even a simple picture of a flower, a temple, or of Christ, it would make a cute accent for a table.
It is about 9 inches tall.
Bishop Built doesn't have the YW torch on their website *yet*, but if you call or email them, you can order it that way.  Their contact information is here.  Amy is very easy to work with.


New Poster of the 2012 Mutual Theme!

The *NEW* poster from Real Hero Posters for the 2012 Mutual Theme is now available!  This print is perferct for young men and young women.  The poster or print is perfect for your YW room, and the pocketcards are perfect as handouts.  Order yours today!  Available on the LDS-YW website.

First LDS Girls Camp Celebrates 90 years

"May we help each young woman know that she can make a difference in the world," said Sister Ann M. Dibb, second counselor in the Young Women general presidency. More than 220 people gathered at Brighton Camp on Saturday, July 30, to commemorate the camp's 90th anniversary. They recalled fond memories and spiritual growth at the first LDS girls camp.  Continue reading here.

New Girls Camp in Canada

Did you know this summer there was a new Girls Camp dedicated in Canada?  It is called the Thomas S. Monson camp - and is "for the purpose of providing enjoyment for our members as they come here and experience the beauties and wonders of nature."
The Thomas S. Monson Camp, which covers more than 400 acres, is about 120 miles east of Toronto and near Peterborough. About 15 acres of the camp have been developed; the rest remain as natural habitat.
Each of the camp sites is named after a Young Women Value. You can read more about it here.


*NEW* Charms

We have finally added some - long-awaited - new charms to our website.  We are also in the process of updating some of our charm designs.  We have a few new ones already in stock and updated on our website.  We still have a few more updated designs coming....

You can see them here.  (You may need to hit REFRESH if you have been to the site recently to get the new information loaded).

We also have the new charm for the 2012 Mutual Theme ready!  It is a GREAT reminder to SHINE all year.

Don't see something that you *know* your YW would love for a charm?  Let us know and we will get it.

Let me know what you think of the new designs!  I'm anxious to know your feedback.  Leave a message on this post.


The most amazing clocks!

I love these clocks.  I just need to decide already - which one I want to order.  So beautiful!!  For All Time Clocks.  I am wanting one of these in the YW room for the girls to see each Sunday.


LDS Coloring App

Want a fun app for your iPhone, iPad, or iPod?  Here is one you can get that will keep you - and your little brothers and sisters entertained for a while.


Kansas City Temple

I found this great blog about all things pertaining to the new Kansas City Temple.  The photography is amazing and the little posts that are there are fun to read.  Check it out here.


Curriculum Orders for 2012

Wards and branches can find instructions for 2012 curriculum materials and place orders through Learn more.

Visit the store, here.


Salt Lake Cemetery Activity

Ever wondered what you could do for an activity - that is so "out of the box"?  Visit a cemetery!  That's right - the Salt Lake City Cemetery.  This is where many of the recent, and past, prominent church members are buried - including Brigham Young, Eliza Snow, President Hinckley, and more.
For a big youth activity - like youth conference or girls camp - have actors at a few of the graves in costume portraying that particular person thru stories, scriptures, music, etc... This could be a very powerful experience for your youth group.
To get the map to the cemetery that shows where everyone (prominent church members) is buried, click here.

Youth Conference at Temple Square

Started thinking about next year's youth conference yet?  Did you know that Temple Square in Salt Lake City, Utah offers youth conference packages?  That's right - all you need for a successful time, done by Temple Square!  You can find out all the information about it here.  These packages look like they would be amazing!  I think your YW and YM will love it!


Old Young Women Medallions - I have some!!

Please visit our NEW BLOG (LDS Sunshine) to request a medallion:

*New* book for LDS youth

Be the Chocolate Chip.  A new book for LDS youth on being strong in a world of "heat".  The Chocolate chip became famous for its ability to stand firm against the heat of the oven. Be the Chocolate Chip helps bring to life the qualities that help us as followers of Christ and members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints stand strong and firm in a world of ever-increasing heat. This book outlines four steps that we can follow each and every day to stay firm and strong, and help to be the chocolate chips in the cookies of life.

One paragraph from the book:
"You can be the chocolate chip.  You can choose to be 'in the cookie, but not of the cookie'.  Just as the chocolate chip made the cookie better by retaining its true nature, you can make the world better by retaining your true nature as a follower of Christ.  You don't have to be something or someone else.  You don't have to melt into the crowd; you can be the chocolate chip!  You will get noticed for being different.  You will stand out.  That is what makes all the difference, and is what makes a chocolate chip cookie so great.  What good would it be without the chocolate chip?  Be you.  Be different.  Be better.  Be the chocolate chip!"

You will be impressed how simple of an application to being a strong follower of Christ is related to a chocolate chip.

Need a fireside idea?  Teach/review the 4 steps in this book to the youth - and then serve nice homemade chocolate chip cookies and milk as refreshments.

Need a gift idea?  Give this book to each of your young women, with a plate of warm chocolate chip cookies.  Or deliver one to each of your visiting/home teaching families with a bag of chocolate chips.

You can order this book on our YW website, here.


Class Presidency Members Binders

With the new year approaching, it's time to get organized.  One item you need to do is get your class presidency members their own binders.  If you already have them - do you need to add anything to them?  Maybe some leader training materials like Creating a Spirit of Unity in a Class Presidency, or maybe Receiving Help from our Heavenly Father.  (You can find more mini lessons like these, here).

Also - remember to print out our fun binder covers (used with the 3-ring binders that have a plastic sleeve on the cover to slide in a piece of paper).  We have one for each class, and for each individual member of the class presidency.


Planning with a Purpose

We all know that we are called as Young Women leaders - not to entertain these girls, but to teach them.  Sometimes we forget that our mid-week activities should actually be teaching our YW something - not just getting together to have fun.
Here is a wonderful article by Sister Dalton, YW General President.  She gently reminds us that we do need to be PLANNING WITH A PURPOSE, and to always remember that "Every activity, every lesson, all we do in the Church, point to the Lord and His holy house" (Elder Russell M. Nelson, "Personal Preparation for Temple Blessings," Ensign, May 2001).

There is an Activity Planning Sheet on our YW website that will help you plan with a purpose.  It is right towards the top of the page entitled: Young Women Activity Planning Sheet.  This page is also included in our 2012 YW Leader Planning Calendar, available here.


Large Youth Events

When I was a young woman, we had Road Shows, almost yearly dance festivals, I was even blessed to be a young woman when Sister Kapp was the YW General President and we had a worldwide Rising Generation YW celebration where we all launched a balloon at the same time - world wide!!  It was unbelievable!  I loved these!  In fact, I think back to my testimony stages during these times, and YES it grew tremendously because of these large events.

Ever have a desire for your youth to participate in a LARGE youth event?  Do you have a deep desire to challenge your youth in this way that you *know* would change their lives?  Well, here is just one more reason to go with that feeling and start planning one in your area!  It is an article from Sister Ann Dibb about this very thing.  You can read it here.

(If you want to read about the Rising Generation balloon launch from 1986, click here.  Scroll down the page about half way to the title "300,000 Young Women Send Balloon Messages of Hope Worldwide")


Modesty statement by actress Emma Watson

Love this!  And from a well known actress.
Even better for our YW who admire and look up to her.
Way to go, Emma!

"I find the whole concept of being ‘sexy’ embarrassing and confusing. If I do an interview with photographs people desperately want to change me - dye my hair blonder, pluck my eyebrows, give me a fringe. Then there’s the choice of clothes. I know everyone wants a picture of me in a mini-skirt. But that’s not me. I feel uncomfortable. I’d never go out in a mini-skirt. It’s nothing to do with protecting the Hermione image. I wouldn’t do that. Personally, I don’t actually think it’s even that sexy. What’s sexy about saying, ‘I’m here with my boobs out and a short skirt, have a look at everything I’ve got?’ My idea of sexy is that less is more. The less you reveal the more people can wonder." - Emma Watson

I'm a Young Women and I BELIEVE!

If you haven't seen this, or if you remember seeing it at the General Young Women Meeting, watch it again.  Show it to your young women!  It is a very powerful, yet simple message.


Halloween Activity Ideas

Need some inspiration on what to do for a fun Halloween activity?  Start with this list and see what you can come up with:
1.  Sing Halloween carols and deliver treats to your neighbors.
2.  Bowl with pumpkins.  Use small pumpkins as the ball, and decorate 2 litter bottles to look like ghosts for the pins.  You could also set up lanes with 2x4's.  Put something behind the pins to catch the rolling pumpkins.
3.  Host a murder mystery dinner.  You can find everything you need here (scroll down towards the bottom of the page).
4.  Host a carnival for the kiddos in your ward.  You can have booths (face painting, water dunk your bishop, etc...), games, treats, cookie decorating, etc..

Have a fun idea for a Halloween activity?  Comment on this post with your ideas!

NEW SLC temple print

Isn't it just awesome?!?!  Your YW will *LOVE* it!!  You can order it here.


NEED - Old YW Medallions

Please visit our new blog to request an old YW medallion:


New Articles of Faith print

The Church has made a new print of the Articles of Faith to match the layout of The Family Proclamation and The Living Christ.  I love it!  You can read about the change here.  You can download the print here.


AYS instead of EFY

Ever wanted to go on a humanitarian trip?  AYS may be the way to go.  Instead of EFY this year, look into AYS.  You can visit their website for more details.  These trips look amazing!

Big impression of the 2012 mutual theme

Want to make a BIG impression with the 2012 mutual theme?  One word for you:
You can order it here.


LDS Sports in your area

If you are a branch, ward or stake who would like to have sports as part of your area, the Utah LDS Sports website can be a huge help to you!  They have rules for games, posters, information, and much more on how to successfully carry out an LDS sports program in your area.  Sports, if executed correctly, can be a very strong tool in your area.  Especially with the YW. I have personally seen more inactive, or non-members come to sporting events than anything else in the church (well, maybe not more than girls camp).  You may want to think about starting up sports if you think it is for you and the members around you.
Here is a form you can fill out for teams

Teaching YW Good, Better, Best

Is it sometimes difficult to teach your young women the good, better, best concept?  A fun way of doing this is with the CANDY BAR GIRLS.  Each candy bar girl has good qualities about her, but she still hasn't reached her full potential.
A fun way to execute this YW activity - have one candy bar for each YW - but each candy bar being different.  If you have more YW than candy bars listed, you can make up some of your own scenario's or have multiple girls have the same bar.  Take turns reading about each candy bar girl, then discuss how each one can be/do better.  Apply these to their lives.  Have them think about all the good they're doing and if they need to be doing more things pertaining to the basic gospel principles.

Recommended Additional Resources:
Dallin H. Oaks video on GOOD BETTER BEST
Dallin H. Oaks article on GOOD BETTER BEST


Holiday Potpourri

What a fun, festive activity!!  Teach your YW how to make homemade potpourri!  And it is so easy.  Here's what you will need:

*small pine cones
*red geraniums, dried (other dried flowers work, but geraniums dry a rich red color)
*cedar chips, bark or twigs, dried
*spruce essential oil {NOT pine oil} you can see what this is here.

*orange rinds, dried
*crushed cinnamon sticks
*whole cloves
*mixed dried flowers and leaves
*orange essential oil

How to make either scent:
Combine dried items and spices in a large mason jar and drizzle oil over them - how much oil you use will depend on how strong the scent will be later.  Cover with a secure lid, shake gently and store in a cool place for 72 hours so oil can absorb into dried items.  When ready to use, pour into a cute center-piece bowl and enjoy the smell of your home.

These recipes came from Utah Valley Magazine, Nov/Dec 2010 issue.


Update on YW Leader Calendar

Here is the link to the YW Leader Planning Calendar on the Deseret Book website.

You can also buy it directly from me on the LDS-YW website.


2012 Mutual Theme Products are here!

Our 2012 Mutual Theme prints are here!!  We have pocketcards, bookmarks, 5x7, and 8x10 size.  We will be adding more products as they become available.  You can get these and lots of other items on our website.
We love our prints - as will you and your young women!!
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