Monday, October 29, 2012

How to Make a YW Value Color Layered Cake

 Ellen, one of our YW advisers, recently taught the young women how to make a rainbow layered cake with the layers in the YW value colors.   I loved how it turned out and since then have been asked by a couple of other people, who had seen the pictures of it,   if I could post the instructions on how to make it.  I think it would make a perfect dessert for a Young Women in Excellence or other special YW night.   I recreated it for my son's birthday (not divulging to the boys that the colors were the YW value colors) to make sure that I got the instructions correct and to get pictures of each step.  I was surprised at how easy it was to make it myself and  loved to see the boys reaction to the cake, which was every bit as animated as the young women's had been.  Enjoy!  
Click here for printable recipe. 

The ingredients:

CAKE  (the ingredients listed are if you are using a Duncan Hines white cake mix.  If using another brand, prepare as directed on that box.)
2 boxes white cake mix
6 egg whites
2 cups water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
food coloring (you'll need at least the primary colors)   
at least one 9-inch round cake pan and parchment paper

1 cup butter
8 cups powdered sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
1+ Tbs. milk (until good frosting consistency has been reached)

CAKE:  Mix together the cake as directed on box.  Divide the batter evenly among seven small bowls (if you're using a double Duncan Hines cake mix it should be about a heaping cup of batter in each bowl).  Dye each bowl of batter your desired color.  

You will have to be liberal with the food coloring in order to get it bright enough.  Read the box of food coloring to get an idea of amounts.  For the gold I added some extra yellow to the orange. 

Here are the YW value colors:   

FAITH--white (frosting)
GOOD WORKS--yellow

After each bowl of batter is mixed well and dyed to your desired color, add to a greased 9-inch circle baking pan with parchment paper lining just the bottom.  Spread batter evenly to the edges and pound pan on counter top to get rid of any air bubbles that may remain. 

Bake at 350 degrees for 9-minutes. 

Repeat for each layer. 

Allow each layer to cool in the pan for about 5 minutes, then carefully remove from pan and allow to cool on a wire rack.  After layers are cool, wrap in plastic wrap and place on a flat surface in a freezer.  It's okay to stack them.
This picture does not reflect the correct final order of colors
Allow to freeze for 1 hour or more, then place the color of layer you want on the bottom onto a cake platter.  For the YW value cake, I placed them in reverse order  (gold on the bottom, then purple, yellow, orange, green, red, then blue on top.  The frosting is the white.) 

FOR FROSTING:  Mix all ingredients together, adding a tablespoon of milk at a time until the right consistency is reached. 

Frost each layer liberally to the edge of the round and place the next layer on top until you've reached the top layer. 

Frost tops and sides of cake. 

If you have time, do a light layer of frosting over the whole cake, then place in the freezer for 1-2 hours, then refrost with a pretty layer of icing. 

If you don't have time to do a second coating, just frost it the best you can. 

To serve, cut into slices and wait for the oohs and aahs! 


Friday, October 19, 2012

Missionary Trivia Game and Letter Writing Activity

I created this letter writing activity and missionary trivia game for a YM/YW combined activity about missionaries.   It turned out well and I think the youth genuinely enjoyed the opportunity to show support to the missionaries in this way. There were some very sweet notes written and I know that the missionaries will be thrilled with their shower of letters.  I'm thinking we might try to do something similar a couple of times a year. 

This activity could also be easily adapted into a FHE lesson. 

Opening prayer:

Opening song:  "Called to Serve" and/or "I Hope they Call Me on a Mission"

Welcome/Brief intro to the night:

Trivia Game (see game below):    I had the trivia questions printed onto two sheets of paper and had the YW president and YM president take turns reading off the questions.   Each correct answer was rewarded with a small piece of candy.   We were pretty liberal with the candy and would reward them for close answers (especially for the ones with very specific numbers for answers).  We had a large group (about 40-50 youth) and I felt like the candy throwing was a good way to keep their attention.  

Short Discussion:  We talked briefly about showing support for missionaries and about the great work they do.  We had intended to also have a convert give a 2-minute spiel about how grateful they were for the missionaries who had found them, but we ran out of time. 

Letter Writing: 
(see pictures below) After the trivia game was complete, we talked briefly about supporting the missionaries, then wrote letters to those that were serving from our ward.  We have 9 missionaries currently serving from our ward, so we placed the long tables around the edge of the room, had a picture of each missionary hanging on the wall, then a large envelope with each missionary's name sitting on the table in front of the picture.  I distributed 4 quarter sheets of paper and a pen to each youth and asked that they write letters to 4 of the 9 missionaries. 

Missionary ID game:  (see picture below) I had ward members send me pictures of themselves as missionaries.  I printed  off the pictures  and put their name, their mission, and the years they served ON THE BACK, then hung them up on a wall.  It was great fun trying to identify the old pictures and perfect as a filler for those who finished early. 

Tie Tying (I had this planned as a filler activity, but didn't end up having time for it):  We'd divide into teams and have the girls (with only the boys' verbal instructions) tie a necktie.  Whichever team could do it the fastest would win. 

This was what we hung up on the walls around the room.  The pictures of the missionaries, with a "What can I write?" sheet  (see below) in between each one. 

Here you can see how we set up the tables in front of their pictures.  Large envelopes with each missionary's name were on the table in front of their pictures, so that the youth could place their letters in there as soon as they were done. 

I collected old missionary pictures from ward members and had them hung up on the wall.  It was great fun trying to identify who was who, before looking on the back where I'd labeled them with the name, mission, and years served.   

A glimpse at the letters for one of the missionaries:

Here is the printable version of the missionary trivia game:
LDS Missionary Trivia Game


I knew that some of the youth would think that they had nothing to write in their letters, so I hung up the following list of ideas by each table. 

 What can I write to the missionaries? 

Your favorite scripture

A recent missionary experience you’ve had

What you’ve been doing in school lately

How your sports’ season has gone

Ask about their mission

Spiritual insights you’ve had during seminary/Sunday lessons

Ask about who they’re teaching

Talk about current events—baseball playoffs, presidential debate (without getting political)

Share an appropriate joke

Something fun that you’ve done lately

A funny antic that your younger sibling or pet has done




Find out the answers to the personalized questions in the Missionary Trivia Game. 

Ask missionary parents for pictures of their missionaries and their current addresses.

Ask ward members for pictures of themselves as missionaries. 

Have sheets of paper cut into quarters.   I figured the smaller size would seem less intimidating to fill than entire sheets of paper. 

Gather enough pens for everyone.

  Print off some missionary clipart and provide scissors and glue for decorating the letters, for those who feel so inclined. 


Friday, October 5, 2012

Printable Apostle Tabs for General Conference Journals (NOW UPDATED)

I saw the idea for tabbed General Conference journals in several different places online.  I liked the idea and wanted to make them with our young women and for our family, but was disappointed not to find any printable versions of the apostle tabs that I'd seen.  So I made them myself and thought I'd share them here for all of you!  My favorite part of these tabs is that I made them so they are perfect sized to be cut out with a 1.25-inch square punch!  Easy peasy! 
Here are the tabs followed by directions on how to use them! The YW loved them!   Happy Conference weekend! 

LDS Apostle Tabs for General Conference Journals

Preparing the tabs:

Print tabs onto white cardstock.

Punch tabs out with a 1.25-inch square punch ( or the with scissors).

Laminate, if desired.

I started off just using regular Scotch tape as shown in the picture, but ended up preferring the invisible gift wrap tape instead. 

Attaching the tabs:
Use a piece of clear tape across the entire tab and attach it to the notebook as shown--with only the name sticking over the edge of the paper.

Leave a page or two between each tab (you may want to count the number of pages you're working with, so you know how many) and stagger the placement of the tab, so it is just below the one before it.  Five tabs fit perfectly down the side of the 5x7-inch notebooks that we used.

I recommend placing the tabs in some kind of order (either seniority or alphabetical).  Here is seniority order:  Monson, Eyring, Uchtdorf, Packer, Perry, Nelson, Oaks, Ballard, Scott, Hales, Holland, Bednar, Cook, Christofferson, Andersen

A few more notes: 

For our family we used 5x7-inch notebooks, which came from the dollar bin at Michael's.  For the young women, we used some extra personal progress journals that we had in our closet. They were almost identically sized, which made it easier to use the same size of everything.


We used an assortment of scrapbook paper, glue sticks, and mod podge to decorate the covers. 

How to make it into a YW value project (we put this inside the back cover):
Click here for downloadable, printable version (print at 60% to fit inside of 5x7-inch journal)

"Making the Most of General Conference" printable (we put this inside the front cover):
Click here for downloadable version
( I used Kristy Maguire's version)--print at 65% to fit inside of 5x7-inch journal

Happy Conference weekend! 



Monday, October 1, 2012

Staying Morally Clean FHE Lesson

I'm trying to publish my lessons without using Scribd.  What do  you think?  I've included the link to a printable version of the lesson to make printing it a little easier.  You'll have to right click on the pictures and copy and paste them into a word processing document before printing.  Please let me know if you prefer this method or publishing them ready-to-go on Scribd.   Click here for my entire FHE lesson index.   

Staying Morally Pure

click here for printable version ( mini versions of the pictures are included and the videos are removed)
Lesson by Lara Goold

Suggested Songs:

"True to the Faith,"  Hymns, page 254
"I Will Follow God's Plan," Children's Songbook, page 164
 "Choose the Right," Hymns, page 239

Lesson Purpose:  To help family members  understand that the effort it takes to stay morally clean is well worth the great rewards that will await them. 

Scripture:  "We believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to all men; indeed, we may say that we follow the admonition of Paul - We believe all things, we hope all things, we have endured many things, and hope to be able to endure all things. If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of  good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things."  Article of Faith #13
1.  Gather items for the object lesson. You'll need a food item that they like, but is not very exciting to them (like a saltine cracker or a plain biscuit)  and some kind of treat that they will really enjoy (ice cream sundaes would fit with the lesson perfectly)
2.  Print off the Mormonad pictured below (or recreate it in real life)
3.  Print off picture of human cell (below)
4.  Find the  two videos mentioned in the lesson and have them opened, loaded and ready to show your family. 
5.  Prayerfully study:  Today's Family:  Protect the Power to Create Life


OBJECT LESSON:   Offer your family a simple treat that they would like, but not be very excited about (a saltine cracker, a plain biscuit, a slice of bread, etc).  Hand it to them, let them hold it through the lesson, and tell them that they are welcome to eat that treat now.  But if they are willing to wait until the end of the lesson, then they won't be able to have the first treat but instead can have another more appealing treat (like an ice cream sundae).   Don't make a big deal about it...just make sure they understand that if they eat the treat now that they won't be able to have the one at the end of the lesson. 

Banging on the piano:  If you have a piano in your house, have someone briefly sit down and play it loudly and poorly.  If you don't have a piano, then ask your family to imagine what it sounds like when an untrained person (like a baby or toddler) plays. 

Then show this video:

Talk about how amazing the performance was and how much you enjoyed it. 

Point out that although it was the same instrument, that there were some pretty big differences between the two performances.   Have them elaborate what was the difference between the two (it's all about playing the right notes, in the right order, with the right timing).  

RELATE:  Relate this concept to physical intimacy.  When done at the right time and right place and right order (as part of a loving marital relationship), then it is beautiful and sacred.  If played out of order and without the right timing, it turns ugly.  If you feel inspired, you can further elaborate on what the ugliness of physical intimacy out of wedlock entails (hurt feelings, possible STD's, possible baby being born without the privilege of coming into a stable, loving family, skewed sense of what a healthy commitment is, damaged self-esteem, jealousy, desensitization to the spirit, etc.)

SHOW this MORMONAD (or recreate it with a real ice cream sundae and a real bug): 
right click on picture, then copy and paste it into a word processing document
where you will be able to adjust it to the desired size before printing.

Ask them if they would like to eat the sundae.  Play it up and emphasize that it's a really big sundae and there's only a tiny bit defiled by the bug and the possible poison that might be on their bodies. 

about how easy the decision is to make when it has to do with the food we put in our bodies, but how easily Satan would have us believe that playing with sacred things (dressing immodestly, viewing pornography, too much physical contact before marriage, etc) is fine if you don't "go all the way".    Emphasize how important it is to steer clear of "bugs" in our life that might be sneaking their way into our conduct and how worth it, it is to wait for the right time and the right place, so we can have the whole beautifully delicious ice cream sundae without the corruption of "spiritual bugs"! 

right click on picture, then copy and paste it into a word processing document
where you will be able to adjust it to the desired size before printing.

Ask your family if they know what it the picture is of.  They will probably guess a cell of some sort, so ask them to guess what kind of cell. 

When they guess or you tell them that they are human cells, talk about how amazing it is that our bodies are made up of so many tiny particles. 

DISCUSS:  Just how our bodies are made up of millions of tiny cells, that our lives are made up of all the small and large decisions we make on a day-to-day basis.  The music we listen to, the people we spend our time with, the movies we watch, the way we treat our siblings, etc  are the core of what makes us into the person that we are. 

RELATE:  If we have a goal of a temple marriage, then we should be making all of the small, seemingly insignificant decisions we face each day, reflect that goal. 

Watch this video while you eat the long-awaited ice cream sundae (or whatever treat you have prepared).  

Bear your testimony of the importance of staying morally clean and pure.  If inspired, share some of your personal feelings. 


REFRESHMENTS:   ice cream sundaes

Display for the week: 
download full size image here

Additional Reading Material: 

YW Manual #1, Lesson 32:  Personal Purity through Self Discipline

Article from  Protect the Power to Create Life article on Chastity article:  Personal Purity

Display of 13th Article of Faith:  Mormonshare

For the Strength of Youth:  Sexual Purity