Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mothers Day

Today is Mothers Day in the United States of America.  I am so grateful to my Mom for all she has done and continues to do for me.  I know my Dad was a better man because of Valerie Houghton :)

My Dad had a great sense of humor and he would have really liked this - Sit back and enjoy :)

We love you Dad :)

Monday, February 7, 2011

Re-connecting with friends through Facebook

Hello Family and Friends,
I am so excited :)

Just this week, I have re-connected with 2 Missionaries who my Dad loved and enjoyed sharing the gospel with.

(Elder) Lee Giboin from London and (Elder) Don Merrell from UT, now living in CO.
My heart is full as I remember these guys.  FACEBOOK, what a wonderful tool for re-connecting. 

Here is what Lee shaed in a message -

'Yes I remember your Father, ''Up the Robins !!! '' - I see John has passed on ... so sorry ... but I am so glad to have met him and yourself.
We (companion) returned for a visit sometime after and found you in your rebel phase. ( added by me ! ME- I REFUSE TO BELIEVE IT haahahha )

There was a slight row in your home, you were upset and we walked with you.
You were mortified that you may have embarrassed your Father and it seemed to be a turning point for you.
After that next time I visited you were back on track.
You obviously had a great love and respect for your family especially your father even in your rebelious phase. I knew he found it tough and so the way you turned out really completed his happiness.

Here is what Don shared in a Facebook Message -

'I am so happy to reconnect with you but am very saddened by the news of John's passing. I have told stories about him and the rest of the Sims clan forever!'

and then later in an e-mail -

'I miss your dad a great deal, even more so now that I know it will be a while before I see him. Besides my converts, there a only a few people I loved as much as your dad. He made my mission so much more enjoyable, even after I left Hull. That's saying something, as I LOVED my mission, anyway! I spent several months in Hull (nearly six); John Sims was 'da Man! He was always willing, nay, eager to help us with his cheerful attitude and hard-work ethic! You are very blessed to have such rich heritage!

Maxine - I am so grateful for your finding and reconnecting with me. I would enjoy seeing you and reminiscing more about John 'Up the Robins' Sims, and Hull, and England, not to mention hearing that beautiful accent.'

This has been such a wonderful couple of days.  It has been so nice to re-connect and hear yet again wonderful things, wonderful memories shared. It sure has reminded me how wonderful it will be when we all meet again in the Heavenly realms above.  Friends on earth - Friends in Heaven!

Indeed what a rich heritage :)

We love and miss you Dad!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Another Christmas without Dad

Hello Family & Friends,

Another Christmas gone!  I have been reflecting on the last Christmas I spent with my Dad.  It was 3 years ago.  He didn't feel well but he wanted so badly to come over to the States to visit us.  I am so glad he made that decision.  It was the last time Lance and my children saw him. 

I then reflected on Christmases past.  We never had a 'bad' Christmas.  Every Christmas was fabulous.  Looking back, I am in awe at how many presents we received every year. Money didn't flow in the SIMS household, but love, happiness and joy did.  I am just really glad Santa was so good to us WINK;)

I think my Dad was more excited than anyone.  The joy in his eyes as we would open our presents.  The anticipation of the looks on his children's faces was almost too much for him to bear.  He couldn't wait until we saw what was under the wrapping and see us smile, laugh and even jump up and down.   Every year, there would be an apple and a satsuma in our sacks.  Dad would tell us he put them there every year for us.  This was one thing from his childhood that he remembered.  He was always grateful for the smallest things.  You could literally give him a Snickers Bar, wrapped or unwrapped and he would be so very grateful for it. 

Dad would often tell us how he was always grateful for the coloring books his Mam and Dad used to give him for Christmas.  If he was lucky he got his own box of crayons.  Most of the time, there was one box to share between all the kids.  He never complained.  He was always so grateful.

I used to (and still do) love watching Mr Kruger's Christmas.  Seeing Mr Kruger smile for joy when the little girl asked him to 'come sing with us'.  I cannot watch that movie without thinking of Dad.  He taught me the real meaning of Christmas. 

I am looking forward to 2011.  How exciting for a new year to begin.  2010 brought lots of happiness, lots of trials and heartache.  What a blessing our Dad has been in our lives.  We wouldn't be the people we are without him........dread to think of what life would have been like without his love, his example, his kindness, his unselfishness.......etc!  (There are lots of etc's :)

Happy New Year to all of you!

We love you Dad ;)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Happy 71st birthday in Heaven, Dad

Happy Birthday in Heaven, Dad !

Dad would have been 71 today.  JUST 71!  I used to think that was 'so old' as a child but now I am older, it is so young :))  Many say time heals and things get easier as time passes.  Not for me.  The more time that passes, the more I miss him.  I wish I could hear his voice! I wish I could see him! I wish I could talk with him!

Without a doubt, I know Dad is in a wonderful place.  I know he is free from all earthly cares and pains.  I know he is with all his wonderful family and friends who have passed on.  I know he is teaching his fellowmen the teachings of Jesus Christ and his gospel.  Really, who would want to come back to earth to go through all what we do if you are 'living' like that? 

Of course, as humans our instincts are those of 'wants' and 'needs'.  I want my Dad. I need my Dad.  He has helped me so much in my life that I wonder how I can possibly carry on.  I often find letters and postcards that he sent me.  Lance passed me one today that had ETTE on it.  Lance asked me what that meant!  I smiled as I told him my Dad would often say to me "Endure to the End".

I know Dad has passed his test.  I know he is in a wonderful place.  He is not in a grave buried feet under.  His mortal body is there awaiting the resurrection.  His spirit was never buried in there.  His spirit is as free as a bird. 

I often wonder how it feels to him to miss us, his family.  I KNOW he does.  I know he will be looking forward to the day when we shall see him again.  I often wonder who will be the first in our family to meet him.  I often wonder why he had to suffer like he did.  I often wonder why he couldn't be cured of his cancer.  Many people fight cancer (and my Dad was a fighter) and live.  I do a lot of 'wondering'.  My mind always comes back to the fact that Heavenly Father needed him!  Needed him to exercise his knowledge in what we know as the Spirit World. 

As I was thinking of Dad today on his 'birthday', I thought how the world was a much better place for him being here.  He gave to many his time, talents, testimony and love, to name but a few.

A friend of ours, Heather Baldwin who remembers my Dad as 'her Bishop' when she joined the church wrote this about him on her Facebook Status -

Happy Birthday in heaven to John Sims. A wonderful Father, Husband and Bishop. My thoughts go out to his Bride Val and to his children' Michael, Maxine,Rebecca and Jared. Thanks for blessing my life with your presence and for the help, years ago, and do you know what? I probably do owe you that tenner :)

What a HUGE blessing to have such a wonderful Father.  Not just for earthly life - but for the eternities. 
Families ARE Forever :)

We love you always Dad!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Open House for Mom

Hello Family and Friends,

Well again it is almost time for my Mom to go back to England.  I cannot believe how quickly three months pass. 

We would love you to come and visit with us.
Sunday June 27th at 6:00pm. (Open House style)
Refreshments will be served and Mom will be making her famous British Trifle. 

Please e-mail me at for our address.

We would love to see you!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Reunited after 42 years

Today is Father's Day!  This is the second without Dad.  Some days life just seems so hard to cope with the fact that I won't see Dad anymore.  Of course I know I will see and live with him in the next life, but I often get selfish when I think "I want him here now."

Saturday was a fabulous day for us.  I arranged for Jerry Bott and his brother Jeffrey, to come to our house along with Ben Tolley and his wife, Karla.  Jerry and Ben are heroes to us, the Sims Family.  They were the Missionaries who taught my parents about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and ultimately baptized them. 

Ben and Jerry (sounds like ice-cream uh? :) hadn't seen each other since 1968.  We have been fortunate to see Jerry on several occasions but the last time I saw Ben, I was just 7 months it made us both feel old when I told Ben we hadn't seen each other for 42 years.  That is how long it had been since Jerry and Ben had seen each other.

Here are some pictures of our happy occasion.

Ben and Jerry - first meeting since they were Missionary Companions in England in 1968

Cake to celebrate after we ate lunch - Lance's choice
Strawberry, Key Lime Cake

My choice - Chocolate Turtle Cake

Ben, Max and Mom, Jeffrey and Jerry

Ben and his lovely wife, Karla

Jeffrey and Jerry.  Can you tell they are identical twins?  I was asking Jeffrey questions thinking he was Jerry :) They let me on a secret - They part their hair on different sides.  That will help when they are together :)
They both went to England on their missions. 

Ben, Mom and Jerry.  Dad was here in spirit. He would have LOVED this reunion if he was here.

Just for fun, thanks to my great friend Chris,(whose family were baptized by these great guys also).... here are pictures of Ben and Jerry when they were in England 42 years ago :)

Elder (Ben) Tolley at the back - Violet, Tom, Steve, Simon and Chris Stansfield

Elder (Jerry) Bott on the left and the Stansfield Family

I thanked both Ben and Jerry for ALL they had done.  It is because of these great men and the examples of my parents that I KNOW I will see my Dad again. 

We love and miss you Dad!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

So happy Mom is here visiting just now.  This past Sunday was Mother's Day here in the US.  Dad often commented how the US and the UK celebrated this day differently but Father's Day - always the same.  :)

Words cannot express how I feel about my Mother.  I love her immensely. I am so grateful for all she has done for me.  She was my Dad's earthly treasure and thankfully will be his eternal treasure too.  We cannot take anything but our knowledge and family with us.
I have been able to tell this visit more than the last just how much she really is missing Dad.  They days and nights are hard and lonely.
Thank you Heavenly Father for blessing me with such wonderful parents.
"We love and miss you Dad"