Today I woke up feeling like Don Taylor! Not that I feel like shaving one leg,
nor do I feel like sneaking into a movie and I am certainly not in the mood to dance provocatively,
nor do I have a sudden urge to watch eternal episodes of "Cheers".
No, the reason I feel like Don Taylor is because tomorrow I am leaving
Springville to travel to Ogden on a public speaking invitation.
Yes, this is Don or it was Don... about 20 something or so years ago. Some of you might know Don Taylor especially if you are from the Sacramento area. I met Don when I was barely a teenager. We lived in Auburn California for about 4 years and Don left to serve a mission from same ward. Then our family moved to Roseville and Don moved there also after he had returned from serving a mission. He hung out with his best buddy at that time Tom Neff. Those 2 were a comedy show. Especially Don. They befriended my brother David who had joined the Army at 17 and then had come home at age 21 and now decided to go on mission. Don and Tom had already served missions and were now home. So, Don and Tom and some of the other return missionaries from there at that time would come over quite often and just hang out or Mom would let them throw parties at the house. I was just a young 15 year old girl and I loved seeing all of these good- looking return missionaries come to my home. Well, we really hit it off and so they would invite me to go to the YSA dances.....I know, I know, a big NO NO! But I was too young to know any better and Mom trusted that these guys would look out for me and they did.
And here he is again. If I remember right this picture was taken at the airport when we were meeting my brother David home from his mission. Of course he is wearing a "Raiders" jersey... they were all die-hard fans of that football team and I would venture to say that he still is today. I remember this picture because Don said "Lisa, take a picture of me coming out of the bathroom"...always a Goof-Ball that Don Taylor! And there he is walking with none other than Tom Neff. (Just like Michael and Adam)
So, as many of you know by now I am a very sentimental girl. I have very fond memories of some very special people who made a big difference in my life. Don is one of those people for sure!
Don was a mentor to me. He was an example to me. He and I would sit and talk about many spiritual things often. He believed in me and would encourage me to be a righteous young woman. He would sometimes take me on his speaking assignments in different wards and I would listen to him and idolize him. He was very popular amoung his peers because he was so funny and inspiring! You could not hold a conversation with him without laughing because he was always telling jokes. People loved hearing him speak.
I will never forget one very important thing that Don said to me when I was about 18 years old. It has stayed with me all my life and I have used it many times. It was after graduation and we were driving down the road and we were having this conversation about the possibility of me going on a mission. I remember having a desire to go but I didnt think it would be possible. However, I also expressed my desire to find the right person who would take me to the temple and then help me raise a righteous family. Then Don said this to me..."Lisa, dont worry so much about finding the right person, worry more about being the right person. If you work on being the kind of person that you would want to marry then you will naturally be attracted to eachother". I will never forget that. That stayed with me and was a motto I lived by for many many years. And so I was blessed with the opportuity to serve a mission, as I was so influenced by so many great return missionaries in my life including Don Taylor.
So, today I am thankful for people like Don Taylor who had a significant influence in my life as a young girl and whom I admire and respect because of the choices they have made in their lives and especially for their belief in me.
Well, wish me luck tomorrow as I try to be like Don Taylor...minus the jokes:/