Pocket Scrapbooking with Project Life

Cultivate a good life and record it.



good life – by makenzie moore


Part of cultivating a good life is knowing that there are so many sweet moments in life despite the trials we face.

I am 15 years old. I have a fabulous family including my parents and two brothers. We love goofing off together and just talking. In my short 15 years of life, I have experienced so many things. On February 15th, 2006, I was diagnosed with a brain tumor in my brain stem. It’s about the size of your typical adult thumb. Since then I’ve had six surgeries, four of which were on my brain, and eight years of chemo. One surgery even led to me having to regain the strength to walk again. Despite all of these challenging times throughout my life, there have also been many sweet moments.

Through the Make-a-Wish Foundation, I was able to meet Barbara Park, the author of the Junie B. Jones books, who dedicated her book Dumb Bunny to me. I was able to meet and receive a blessing from the prophet of the LDS church, Thomas S. Monson, who is an excellent role model. I’ve made so many new friends, including the doctors and nurses at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. For several years I was able to go to Camp Rainbow through the hospital, which included many fun activities such as horseback riding, zip lining, and rock wall climbing which were made possible by generous donations. I am so grateful for all that I’ve been able to do, despite the fact it is because I have my tumor. Even though these were all fantastic experiences, they don’t compare to the great moments I’ve had on a daily basis.

Though going to the doctor isn’t fun, I am so grateful for modern medicine. There are many other sweet moments I experience everyday. I enjoy talking to my mom. I love it when my brothers show concern for me. I love to see amazing sunsets which make me feel loved and so blessed. I love food from my grandmas, eating, watching movies, being at home every day (my favorite place), walking, winning an UNO game, spending time with my family, shopping with friends and family, or just a kind word from someone. For me, sweet moments could even just be a piece of chocolate. I am grateful when I get to leave the hospital when I’ve had to stay and when other kids have to stay. I especially love receiving answers to prayers which puts me in awe every time.

There are so many blessings that fill our every day. If we are too focused on the negative, we will miss these seemingly small, sweet moments. It can be hard to see the sweet moments when our world seems to be falling apart. I love my life! I love who I am. I am grateful for the sweet moments that surround me everyday. I’m so grateful for the opportunity to write about cultivating a good life.


Note from Becky

Makenzie, you’ve left me speechless. I adore you, sweet girl – and I so appreciate your example of radiating positivity. Doesn’t this make us all feel like we really have nothing to complain about? I mean, really. Blessings are abundant, no matter what our life situation or what we’ve been through. Makenzie is living proof that this attitude is the essence of cultivating a good life and I am grateful to know her and her family since she was a little girl.

Read Makenzie’s story here.


22 Responses

  1. Makenzie,
    Your story is SO inspirational and it touched my heart! I admire your positivity and attitude. I appreciate Becky sharing your story as I’m going to share it with my daughter who is 10 and she loves cheering on people who have suffered from health issues, including me (I suffer as severe brain injury) so as we say at our home “love your brain.” Many hugs for a lifetime full of fabulous things and great health!!

  2. Karen Hutchinson says:

    Such wisdom from such a young lady -..it’s hard to see the sweet moments when your world is falling apart…May you have many more. Thank you for sharing this….

  3. LaToya says:


    You are SUCH an Inspiration! Continue to let YOUR LIGHT SHINE to Encourage Others♡

  4. Maria Lien says:

    Makenzie you are a true inspiration. I went through two cancers myself and for a while I felt like my world was upside down. Then I see you story and your courage and I am in awe and touched by you. So happy when I hear of or read about such a wonderful person as yourself. I will be praying. Never give up. You gave me such hope.

  5. Roy Redmond says:

    Makenzie – You have always been a bright light in my life! Your exuberance shines through to everyone. I am so proud to be your grandpa and look forwared to each moment that we can spend together… You are a walking merical that brings joy into each life that you interfacw with.


    Grandpa Roy

  6. Terri Karlin says:

    Makenzie, Thanks so much for sharing your incredible journey!! You are such an inspiration to so many. Very few have the strength, attitude, courage and faith that you have displayed but your story will give others a new found strength through your living example. God bless you and keep on doing what you do! ! You are always in our prayers.

  7. Kimberly Brogan says:

    I’m not sure you remember me but I’m your cousin! My grandma is Irene. But anyway I just wanted to say thank you and I’m so proud to call you my family, even if it isn’t my immediate family. You’re so beautiful and such an example. :) thank you and hopefully I’ll see you soon!

  8. Terri Moore says:

    Thank you so much Becky for giving Makenzie the opportunity to do this. Thanks to all the wonderful comments made about Makenzie. Anyone that knows Makenzie knows that this is the way she is ALL the time. So many nurses over the years always comment that she is the nicest most polite patient they have ever had. I even remember Makenzie coming out of anesthesia telling the surgeon how grateful she was and continuing to thank everyone as they were helping her during recovery. I am not sure how I ended up with such an amazing daughter. Me and my husband are convincced that she needed to finish raising us. I love you so much Makenzie

  9. Kim Griffin says:

    You are an amazing young lady and you have gone through so much in your short life and came throught it with a smiling heart. Your grandmother taught my daughter in 7th or 8th grade. She is also an amazing woman and did so much for my child. I really admire you and now that I have read this I am inspired that nothing in life can be so bad to turn you into a very selfish human being. Good luck to you and keep being the awesome person you are and you just might change a few things ( or people ) in this world. I am forwarding this to my daughter as well. My prayers are with you & your whole family.


    Kim Griffin

  10. Amber Redmond says:

    I just love you so much Kenzie! You are an amazing young lady and you are such a great role model to me. We are so lucky to have you in our family. I am so happy that you have written this story. I find myself reading it over and over and I will always cherish this. I love you girl!

  11. Monica says:

    I would just love to grab her and hug her!!!

  12. sarah says:

    Makenzie is such a bright light! I met her once when she was little (I taught school with her dad) and she was sweet then too. Thanks for spreading your positive attitude and healthy perspecitve! What an inspiration!

  13. Madalyn Newswander says:

    What beautiful heart touching story of a valiant young girl. Your story and your positive outlook brought tears to my eyes. Our heavenly Father and your amazing family are wonderful. May Heavenly Father continue to bless you always! Hugs and prayers are sent your way. :)

  14. Denise Hunter says:

    Thank you Makenzie for reminding me what’s really important in life! You are a wonderful person. Thank you for sharing with us!

  15. Janell Ferguson says:

    Makenzie, you don’t know me, but your family was in my ward when you were young and before you were diagnosed. Even then, everyone was so amazed by this beautiful little child who stole our hearts with your wonderful smile, but even more by hearing your sweet testimony at almost every testimony meeting! You were an amazing child even then, and stole all our hearts. Its no surprise that you have stolen our hearts again with your awesome courage in facing such trials. May God continue to bless you with his love and healing

  16. Jaana says:

    I just so, so needed to read this. I’m recovering from spraining BOTH knees and feeling sorry for myself… thank you Makenzie and Becky for helping me to look for a silver lining today.

  17. Jan Ritter says:

    Mackenzie has written a beautiful part of her life! She has endured so much we all can learn so much from her!!! She does have a wonderful family!!

  18. Teresa says:

    It is a wonderful story, thank you Mackenzie for sharing and to Becky for posting. Prayers with you.

  19. Nicole says:

    Makenzie – Your heart is just so full. Your words are incredibly powerful. Thank you for your post. And to Becky – thank you for publishing it.

    • Makenzie Moore says:

      Thank you so much to everyone for all of the wonderful comments, prayers, love and support. Once again thank you to Becky for this amazing opportunity! I am so blessed!

  20. You are an inspiration Makenzie. Keep spreading your positive thoughts. You are amazing! Many blessings to you.

    Mary from NH