Saturday, May 1, 2010

It's A Small World After All . . .

It is seems like where ever you go, you meet someone who knows someone you know or discover your path has crossed before with a person you thought you just met.

I supposed it is likely, especially in the church, for this to be common, yet it still surprises me how often I discover a connection I have with another person.

Take my friend, Jenny from Oregon. After becoming good friends we learned that at one time we lived only four houses away from each other in Orem, Utah, when she was five. In fact, my sister was her primary teacher. We also discovered I knew her husband’s aunt when I was at BYU.

Then there is my friend Sonia. While visiting with her uncle, for what I thought was the first time, I learned my father was his mission president and that he had actually been in my home on numerous occasions.

This past weekend at Women’s Conference I had a few additional “connection” experiences.

I arrived at the Phoenix airport an hour early and glanced around at the bubbly groups of women, all going to Women’s Conference. Finally, I spied a sister from my stake and went over to sit by her. She introduced me to her friend Heidi from another stake. I learned this past week that the most often asked question to anyone attending conference is, “Who are you with?”. (I think I was asked that at least 30 times in two days)

I told them I was meeting my sisters and we were all going to hear our oldest sister speak. Heidi asked me her topic, which I was not sure of, so we looked it up. As she saw my sister’s name on the program she asked, “You are Terri Ballstaedt’s sister? When I said yes, she exclaimed, “My husband grew up with her husband, Rock!”

I thought how funny that out of everyone there at the airport, I found someone to sit by who knew my relatives.

But, the most surprising “connection” was revealed after my sister’s talk. Sister Sylvia Allred, first counselor in the General Relief Society presidency was sitting in front of me during the presentation. Not being able to resist talking with her, I went over to visit after the presentation. During our chat we discovered that not only had we lived in Costa Rica at the same time, but she remembered my family. She had several family home evenings at our home, remembered the school we attended, my siblings, (especially my older sister Ruth who was a teenager at the time) and even the topic of a lesson my father gave.

But mostly she said she remembered how amazing she thought my mom was. Not only did she have teenagers at home and missionaries to care for, but she also had just given birth to my little brother Mark.

I have to admit, I think it is pretty cool, that Sister Allred thinks my mom is amazing. But then I think she is pretty amazing too.

One of my favorite pictures ever. I think it is such a classic.
This is my brother Randy, and my sister Ruth, standing in front of the mission home in Costa Rica. Sister Allred particularly remembered Ruth because of all the boys who had a crush on her.

Here is a picture of me and my four sisters with Sister Allred.
There are 21 years age difference between my oldest sister and the youngest.


Shannon said...

The church really does make the world a small place. I'm glad you survived the snow and had a fun trip. What great memories!

Cherie said...

First - So happy to hear you were able to attend Women's Conference! The stars were not aligned right for me this year but I always love to go. That is especially neat that your sister spoke!
It is indeed such a small world - especially in the church. It just makes me think of how great the "party" is going to be someday as we run into and greet everyone we know when we get to heaven! Great thought.
I love the picture of you and your sisters with Sister Allred - What a special connection. You and your sisters are beautiful!!

(love the vintage pic too - Ruth's hair is classic 70's - Wahoo!!).

Momza said...

Beautiful buncha girls there! And the Church sure does make the world smaller! Nan said she saw you too! I feel like I missed a great trip!

Rebecca Irvine said...

One of the things I love about the church is that it brings people together from all over the world! Hope you are having a fabulous time at Women's Conference

KC Mom said...

What an awesome experience! And yes, the world is small in the Church!

Lisa said...

How exciting that your sister spoke at Women's Conference. You didn't make faces at her did you? What a great picture of you and your sisters.

Mary said...

It is so true that you can always find someone you know.My ward has a lot of visitors and no matter where they come from there always is some conection to be found. By the way I LOVE the retro photo.

Sue said...

Sounds like a wonderful time, and I love the way these connections happen within the Church. It truly is a small world.


GRAMEE said...

I know it is such a small world..
my dad used to know people where ever we went when we were kids..

One of my facebook friends said to me just the other day.

"Jane Doe" how do you know her..
(it was a friend of mine,
who had commented on a status)

I said well I know her from "such a place."
she said well she was in my past ward.
I just thought small world when
2 of my friends know each other, yet neither knew they each knew me..

If that made any sense to anyone at

Be Thou Humble said...

21 years between the oldest and youngest---your mom IS amazing! Love the photos. So fun to be able to support your sister with your sisters!

Just ME the MOM said...

What a wonderful photograph - such a great story about Sister Allred. The world get's smaller and smaller all the time. Thanks for stopping to have lunch with me. I hope we can do it again soon :) Next time you're in AF . . .


Da Bergs said...

How cool that she remembered having FHE with you all... the world really is small, my cousin was living in Saudi Arabia and had a man over for dinner, it ended up being a man that my FIL served in the Stake Presidency with in Vegas! He knew me and my hubby... funny! (and you are brave to just go up and talk to Sis. Allred, I would never have the nerve!!!)

Jenny-Jenny said...

Sooo Cool! I love trips with my sisters. How awesome to be able to hear your sister speak. And to meet Sis. Allred. I love that picture of your brother and sister. Great hair!

Terri said...

Thanks, I am stealing that picture for my blog