“Creating a Family Flag,” Ensign, Sept. 2001, 70
To help establish family unity and loyalty, our Relief Society teacher suggested we create a family flag and motto. Our family decided we also wanted a family song and newspaper. Here are some ways we brainstormed together to accomplish our goal.
Choose the flag’s colors. The colors might be symbolic and represent your family. For weeks our family voted on our flag’s colors, finally narrowing it to blue and gold to represent loyalty and excellence.
Select symbols for the flag. Our family decided that the flag should have a heart at its center. Several of our children wanted the flag to have gold stars as well—one for each child. Everyone helped make these decisions, and the group effort strengthened and united us.
Choose a family motto and song. “Give your best” was voted as our family motto. Our daughter Carolee, who is talented at the keyboard, composed a melody she called “Go, Give It Your Best.” We added lyrics, and other family members accompanied the tune with instruments they played.
Create a family newspaper. One of our children suggested we start a family newspaper. We brainstormed a name for it at family home evening. Following a lesson on sharing, our daughter suggested we call it Sharing. The newspaper became a regular family project but usually made it to “press” only once a year. Our children’s drawings became the newspaper’s “photos.” Later we used real photos. Over several decades, the issues we accumulated have become a wonderful source of family history.
For many years, we raised our family flag daily on a flagpole in front of our Idaho home. Now, as each child leaves home for school, a mission, or married life, we give them a small replica of the family flag. We also make banners for our grandchildren and are delighted when our married children create their own family flags and their own family newspapers.
These family activities, like strands of thread, have woven our hearts more closely together and tied us tightly to memories that reinforce and sustain us.—Susan Billings Mitchell, Valley Park Third Ward, Taylorsville Utah Valley Park Stake