Pocket Scrapbooking with Project Life

Cultivate a good life and record it.



good life – by lisa bearnson

Part of cultivating a good life is to just say YES as much as possible!

When my children were young, I heard a quote from a wise woman (Marjorie Hinckley) who said: “Whenever possible, say yes; they are only kids once!” I thought long and hard about these words and realized that there are enough people in this world telling my children “no!” I wanted them to have a mom who said “yes!”

Let’s face it–it’s easy to say no. “No, stay inside you’ll get dirty.” ” No, it’ll make a big mess, watch TV instead.” “No, I’m tired so talk to me later.” “No, go to bed–you can finish that in the morning.” I often found myself saying “no” so quickly when it easily could have been a “yes.” So, I changed my way of thinking. I didn’t worry so much about the chaos and clutter and I began saying “yes.”

“Yes, you can eat your ice cream from the scoop.” “Yes, you can make play dough with your friends.” “Yes, you can sing and dance in the rain.” “Yes, you can create a fort in the family room.” “Yes, you can grow your own garden.” “Yes, you can build a tree house.” Much to the surprise of my children, I’ve even been known – on more than one occasion – to change my “no” to a “yes.”

Half of my children no longer live at home (sob), but I’ve realized that this simple three-letter word continues to be their motto. In a recent letter from my 20-year-old son, who has been living in New Zealand for the past 10 months, he writes: “We should live life with a cheerful heart. Only then will life’s victories come. Just keep trying. Keep smiling. Keep saying YES to life! Remember that happiness is not a destination, it’s the journey along the way.”

Great food for thought. I’m off to eat some ice cream straight from the carton using the scoop as my spoon.

Photo by Robin Johnson


Note from Becky

Lisa Bearnson was my first personal example – and will always be one of my greatest examples – of balancing the role of being a wife & mother, and someone willing to continually serve, and an entrepreneur. No one can truly “do it all.” Lisa would never pretend to “do it all” … but she has been blessed with a wonderful energy that has allowed her to be pretty remarkable in all the most important aspects of her life.

I have respected and adored Lisa from the very first time we met. She had enough faith in me to make me a part of the Creating Keepsakes team – and the magazine’s first Creative Editor – when I was just 20 years old. I will always be thankful to her for that journey which obviously led to becoming an entrepreneur myself. If you missed that video I shared back in December, check out my “Tribute to Creating Keepsakes” post. Lisa certainly is a shining example of someone who cultivates a good life – and this has blessed the lives of so many. Mine included.

Connect with Lisa:  Blog  |  Facebook  |  Instagram  |  Twitter  |  HSN


14 Responses

  1. Sandy says:

    I love this. One of my “rules” for my family I created this year was “find a way to say yes” in relation to the way I speak with my kids. It feels so much better to say yes, than no!

  2. Heidi Shepherd says:

    I grew up hearing “no” so often that I promised myself that when I haf children, I’d be more of a yes person. Sure enougj like Lisa, I find myself saying yes more often than not. In fact when I do say no, they know I really mean no.

    It’s nice to hear others are a “yes” kind of person too. After all, we only get one childhood!

  3. Shanon says:

    I’m not a mother, but I have worked with teenagers professionally for almost 12 years now. I found that motto most helpful when dealing with them. In a residential treatment setting, there are numerous rules in place as there should be. There were numerous times I *had* to say no. So, I made it a point to say yes if there was any way I could. It was best decision I made. The kids respected my “no’s” so much easier because they knew I tried to say yes whenever I could. Marjorie Hinckley is such a great woman!

  4. Maryann Larkin says:

    When Lisa Bearnson (one of my favorite scrapbook heroes, like you!) asked to follow my private Isntagram account, I was thrilled! I had made several comments on her posts about her son’s mission in NZ. My husband and I are serving in Australia, here in Canberra and we meet lots of Kiwis. She is so kind to like some of my photos and has even made a comment or two. Her goodness and graciousness shines through and always has. Yours does, also! (Now, to get you to follow me, too! ;-) I’m grandmalarkin on Insta). Some day, I hope to meet BOTH of you!

  5. dawn says:

    Great post Lisa! I have loved everything about Lisa since finding her CK magazine 9 years ago. So happy to see her here with you Becky! Have learned so much from the two of you. I like this “yes” idea and have slowly used it more just this year.

  6. brenda says:

    Trying to avoid saying ‘no’ was one of the favourite tips I received as a young mom; it was tied in with giving children choices. A few examples: You can have a cookie after dinner or no cookie at all; it’s your choice. We can leave in 10 minutes or right now; it’s your choice.

  7. Gail Slagle says:

    Great post! I love reading Lisa’s blog as well as yours, Becky. Very good points that life is too short to say NO all of the time. We need to enjoy life and when we are able, say YES as often as we can!! :-)

  8. Wonderful advice Lisa.

    Mary from NH

  9. Vicki A says:

    Wow, this so speaks to me and thank you so much for sharing. I say NO way to often and then feel guilty later thinking that it wasn’t really that big of deal. So she gets dirty, so it messes up the house, etc. I have to keep remembering I only have her at home for so long and I need to treasure every moment and let her treasure every party of her youth. I am definitely going to be saying YES more often. Thank you!! :)

  10. April Krause says:

    This is a real eye-opener for me. With (almost) 3 year old twins, I say “no” A LOT! I don’t always like my constant “no’s” and I often later think that maybe I should have let them color using the regular markers instead of the ones that only color on certain paper. I SHOULD have let them stomp in those mud puddles. I SHOULD let them play play dough on the carpet. One day all these shoulds will turn in to regrets. Thank you for this- I needed it!

    • Krista says:

      I know how you feel! I have 4 year old twin boys, and I say “no” so, so often! I need to be better!

  11. Kim Matchett says:

    Thank you! That is a simple way to make life a whole lot sweeter. Love it!

  12. Keianna says:

    Great post. Thank you. We all should say Yes more often to more than just our children.

  13. Connie B says:

    Im sitting here in tears as I was a “no” Mom. Sometimes, as I got older, I thought what the heck…why not say yes and I did. I wish now I could turn back time. I feel so sad right now. However, I’m a YES grandma and that makes me happier. Thanks Lisa, I’m asking my daughter today to be a yes kinda mom, I think she is most times.