Thursday, August 28, 2008

Who's out there??

A few of my friends have writen similar posts, and I've been wanting to for QUITE some time. I just keep thinking I should do it later. I'm not sure why. I tell myself I shouldn't do it so close to when someone else has done the same thing. I know. I'm weird.

Anyway, I'm so curious as to who is reading my ridiculousness. I'm sure there are some passersby who read and don't comment. Maybe you're a friend, or family (I know you read, Emily!!), or maybe your a stranger, a fellow blog stalker!! Yay for blog stalkers!! (We all do it).

So if you're reading this, I want to know!! Comment! Even if it's just a simple, "It's me!!" or "I do!!" I'd love it!

I made a REALLY great friend this way a while back. She had a similar post, I was blog stalking, so I commented. We get together with our kids all the time now. (Well, not lately because you're too busy with family that's in from out of town! Geez, Kristen!! Who's more important?!) ;)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


I've always been jealous of boys who serve missions for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  I chose to get married and have children rather than serve a mission, but I've still always been envious of the knowledge and training missionaries receive.

I know the Book of Mormon stories well enough.  And I know basic church history.  I don't know the Bible very well.  And I can barely remember the scripture mastery scriptures I learned in seminary.  And don't even get me started on the Gospel Doctorine Sunday School class!!  I swear, they really need to dumb it down for me sometimes!!

Anyway, the reason I'm saying this is because I decided that I want to know more.  And I know I am not going to get the missionary training in six weeks the way those young men who serve full-time missions do.  So I picked up my copy of Preach My Gospel and decided to add that to my morning personal scripture study.

I've tried to use Preach My Gospel before for Family Home Evening lessons, but even then, the way the book is addressed to full-time missionaries confused me.  I didn't know how to really apply the lessons to myself.

I'm recognizing now that it does apply.  I just need to follow the spirit and find the things that apply to me and my situation in life.  So I won't be proselyting, but I can still serve the Lord, right?

Well, yesterday I started reading the chapter on the attributes of our Savior, Jesus Christ.  I figured that was something I could REALLY use some work on developing.  :)  Today I read a part of the chapter that focused on Faith.

I've had a hard time with faith in the last few years.  The thing I struggle with is knowing whether or not I have it.  I'll be in a situation where I'm praying to the Lord and hoping that he'll grant my request or answer my prayer based on my faith, the way he's promised us in the scriptures, and I'll think to myself, maybe the answer is just no.  Maybe it's just not His will.  Or maybe I just don't have enough faith.  I mean, I believe that if I have enough faith that through His power I could literally move a mountain.  I believe that promise.  But do I really have enough faith for that to ever happen?  I mean, do I really believe it as much as I think I do?  Could I make miracles happen?

I read the scriptures listed in Preach My Gospel.  I read the passages in the manual and the Bible Dictionary section on Faith.  It was funny to me the way I already knew everything I read.  I had learned every word of it in Primary, Family Home Evenings, Sunday School lessons, Seminary.  And my spirit knew it from some time way before I can remember.  But somehow I had forgotten.

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.  Heb 11:1

And now as I said concerning faith - faith is not to have perfect knowledge of things; therefore if ye have faith ye hope for things which are not seen, which are true.  Alma 32:21

Funny how I forget.  I don't have to know everything.  I don't need to know how the Lord will answer my prayer.  I simply need to have faith, to hope, that He will.  Simple.

I think I complicate things too much.  I over think my faith most of the time.  But I do have faith in my Savior.  I do have faith that by living according to His plan I will return to live with Him again.  I might not have all of the answers to all of the questions right now.  And I can keep searching for them.  Because if I know that if I have faith, the Lord will show me, in His time and through my sincere study, the answers.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

"The spirit made me blog stalk!!"

So I have this addiction. I LOVE LOVE LOVE to go through blog lists and read about other people's lives. Initially, I was looking through the blog lists of friends to find more friends' blogs. People who I already knew so that I could catch up with them. Also, because I'm ridiculous and having a short blog list made me feel like I had no friends, so I had to find more to help out my sad self esteem. Pretty pathetic, right? Well get over it because I know you've felt that way too!

Anyway, so I had this crazy idea the other day to try to find some bloggers out in the Rock Springs/Green River area (since I'll be moving there before the end of this year) and did a quick google blog search for "Rock Springs, Wyoming".

Most of what turned up were businesses or visitor's entries about their quick trip to see family and whatnot. But one blog was a young family: girl about my age, a young daughter maybe close to Payson's age, and a husband who just relocated his family for a job in Rock Springs. So I left a comment.

Of course, I didn't leave it at that. As I'm re-reading my comment for typing errors (because I'm a freak) I notice the other comment left above mine. Something to the effect of, "You left a comment on such-and-such-blog the other day about depression and I really appreciated it, yada yada yada".

Sparked my interest. So of course I open a new window and type in PLEASE TELL ME I'M NOT ALONE IN MY CREEPY, VOYEURISTIC TENDENCIES!! (And after looking up the definition of 'voyeur', please note that I exclude any sexual connotation from my use of the term).

So I started looking around at this stranger's life and notice a beautiful picture of a baby girl with dates below the image, "April 19, 2007 - June 15, 2008". I'm heart-broken and of course want to know the full story. Above the image it says if you want to skip back to the first post after this child's death, just click on the photo. (Some of you may have come across this particular blog already).

Now that I had been, in essence, given permission to read on, I did so. I spent the entire afternoon on the computer engulfed in this family's, and especially this mother's, sorrow and grief.

This might sound strange, but I could not tear myself away. I'm not sick and twisted. I didn't want to spend my afternoon heart broken for these strangers. But something so much stronger than curiosity pulled me through each post. There was something behind each word that kept me reading. I let the kids play and destroy the computer room until I absolutely had to address a need, and then I'd sit right back down and start where I'd left off.

Like I said, it was not the tragedy of loss for this family that kept me reading. There was so much more to it. This incredible mother, even only months after the loss of her daughter, was sharing the most precious thing she could with the world, and in the most candid way possible. She wasn't just sharing her pain.

She shared her testimony. And the testimony of this beautiful little angel. Every word was dripping with loss. But every word was equally soaked in the most firm conviction that the atonement of Jesus Christ is helping her to get through this time. That she knows that there is life after death. That she is completely assured that she will raise her daughter to maturity one day. That no matter how much it hurts waiting, there is no doubt that every bit of heartache she is now suffering will be completely restored to her through our Savior.

Instead of curling up in bed and crying day after day, as I can imagine myself doing in such circumstances, she is sharing the gospel with so many (she's had 260,406+ hits on her blog in only a few short months). She is giving her daughter's death so much meaning!

I was glued to my computer because of the spirit. I know it sounds silly. "The spirit made me blog stalk!" But I just felt her testimony so strongly within me. It was such a beautiful reminder to me of the things I need to be working on. She posts so many things in her grief that apply to my life now. I need to remember my Heavenly Father and Savior more in the daily choices that I'm making. I need to have more patience with my children and try to see them through the eyes of the Father. I need to be more diligent in seeking out His words and guidance in personal and family scripture study (rather than just reading quickly through the passages). I need to bear my soul to Him in prayer often. More often. I need to seek His presence through temple attendance and then allow His spirit to dwell in my home. I need to teach and prepare my children to gain their own undeniable testimonies of the atonement of Jesus Christ. I need to apply that atonement in my own life in all ways possible and every day! I need to show my gratitude to my elder brother, Jesus Christ, by living according to His teachings and strengthening my relationship with Him. So many more things.

I didn't walk away from reading this sorrowful story feeling depressed. I felt strengthened and uplifted.

The thing that stood out to me most, and that hasn't left my mind, was the spiritual strength that I saw in this stranger (although, after reading through the last months of her life, I feel she is my sister, at the very least in the spiritual sense). She doesn't just have a testimony. She's living it. She's sharing it. She's strengthening it constantly.

There are times in my life where I've felt so close to the Lord. Other times I've felt so far away. Lately, I've felt somewhere in between. My own fault, I know. I feel Him guiding my life and my choices. I feel Him close by me. But not as strong and not as constantly as I have at other times.

So the last few days I've been reading a little more closely, praying a little longer, pondering so much deeper. I know there won't be an instant change in me, but I'm hoping to become a little more like this woman, a little more Christlike.

I'm so far from perfect. I make so many mistakes. I could list them for years, even!! (I promise it would take that long). But rather than beat myself up for them, I'm going to try to just be better. President Hinckley said, "Always do your very best, but make sure it is your very best. Heavenly Father will make up the rest." So I'm just going to try to make sure I really am giving Him my very best.

And maybe through sharing this with you, we can help each other. We can strengthen each other as sisters and daughters of a King, the way that Stephenie's sharing has strengthened me a little. At least strengthened my resolve to try.

I have so many other thoughts in my head somersaulting around in there, but I just can't find the words for everything. I'm not always the best with words. Anyway, if you want to look at her blog (and I recommend it, it's absolutely amazing!) you can find her here: A Daily Scoop

Monday, August 18, 2008


I know it's just pre school, but it's still school! And it just doesn't feel like Payson's old enough to be going to any kind of school!! But I guess she is coming up on four years old and I'm having to come to terms with the fact that I can't make her stop growing.

Today was Payson's unofficial first day of pre school. They had a "short day" open house. So I got to tag along and let her meet her teacher and get acquainted with her classroom and cubby and all of that.

She had picked out her special first day of school outfit and we got all dressed up early for a photo shoot before we left.

I made her turn around so I could get a shot of her bum. I just love the little detailing on the back pockets of her pants.

Here's the big girl outside her classroom door. She loves her sun glasses. She wears them inside and out all the time.

She warmed up right away when she saw the toys out on the floor. She even made a quick friend.

And this is Payson's teacher, Mrs. Shannon. She was so sweet! I think Payson is going to love her teacher and class.

And we got one last shot on our way home, out in front of the school. The sun was right in Payson's eyes, so it's really an attractive picture of her, don't you think?

Jason left last night for Wyoming. We're hoping to see him on the weekends, but we just don't know what his schedule will be like in the beginning. He made sure to give Payson a Father's Blessing yesterday afternoon for school. We had been talking to her about it and then she saw Grandpa give her aunts blessings, so getting one of her own from her Daddy was pretty exciting.

We miss you, Daddy!! We hope things are going well in Wyoming and we know you'll do great! Can't wait to see you again soon!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

What do you want first? The good news or the...well, just news.

Make video montages at

We'll start with the good news!! Yay!! Jack is finally walking!! He's been taking steps for the last month but in the last couple of days he's finally taken off. He'll walk the entire length of the house if the mood strikes. It's too cute!! He's just a little cruiser now.

And then there's the other news. It's not bad news, but it's really not good news either. I had my annual "female appointment" last week. For the most part everything went well. But they did find "something" in my left breast. There's a small lump.

Not something I ever expected. Let alone at 24 years old. I haven't really known how to handle the situation the last couple of days. It's been a little emotional for me. It's not that I'm scared or anything. I learned that 80% of lumps that are removed are non-cancerous, so that's a plus. And I found out this morning that my dad's mom (who passed away about five years ago) had many masses found in her breasts, non of which were cancerous as far as I'm aware. I'm still trying to get ahold of family members who have more information about her medical history there, so I can discuss it with my doctor.

Anyway, the big stressor in all of this mess is that our medical insurance doesn't kick in until mid-September. Ugh. I went in expecting to just pay for one exam out of pocket. I actually went to my midwives (who I've had my babies with) because they also prescribe me my medication and I needed that prescription renewed. Since she's not a "doctor", per say, she told me to see my regular doctor and decide with him whether or not I needed a biopsy or mammogram.

Well, if I go in prior to benefits kicking in, number one, it could get pretty expensive, and number two, if they did find cancer I would then have a pre-existing condition which would render me uninsurable and we would have to pay for cancer treatments out of pocket. YIKES!!

We're not expecting things to go that way, but you never know. So we're trying to come up with the right plan. Jason gave me a blessing and we've been finding out what we can. So far we're feeling like, even though we know it could potentially be a big risk, waiting a month for benefits is the right thing to do. Might sound crazy to some, but we're just letting the Lord guide us on this one.

So anyway, like I said, not necessarily bad news, but not great. Just one of those things I didn't expect to be dealing with amidst everything else. We could definitely use your prayers. :)

Other than those two things, Jason will be starting his new job next Monday (a week from tomorrow). He'll stay in a hotel, courtesy of his company, Monday through Friday. Then Friday nights he'll hopefully be able to drive home and spend the weekends with us for the first thirty days. After that, he'll be sent to Oklahoma for three weeks (no weekend trips there :(). Then we'll finally all move out to Wyoming together and get settled in. Exciting!! Wish us luck! WE'RE GOING TO NEED IT!! :)

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

relaxing, roseola, and reading

Last week, the kids and I had a few little play dates. On Wednesday, some friends invited us to a movie with them at the Scera in Orem. They do a weekly kids movie for cheap all summer long. Even the snack stand is inexpensive!! So we saw a cheesy Veggie Tales movie. The kids loved it and I even found myself laughing out loud during some parts.

After the movie, our friends spent the afternoon playing with us. Payson and Ethan get along SO WELL!! It's darling! And Kristen is so fun to talk to. During our Relief Society lesson on Sunday (on Friends) I just kept thinking about how some days she and her boys are my sanity!! It's so nice to take a break from the week and de-stress with a good friend!

Anyway, I snapped a few pictures of the kids playing.

payson and ethan reading books and playing kitchen

payson took this picture of all of us, apparently Camden thought something was funny


jack kept pushing Camden around in the little car, we thought it was darling!

On Saturday, we went to Jett and Bryton's combined birthday party. Payson was SOOOO excited to go all week. She loves these boys (I'm noticing that all of her friends are boys; should I be worried?) and there was going to be a bounce house there.

We had some much fun! Jobi outdid herself with the cute decorations, leis for the kids, a little pool, water balloons, sidewalk chalk, a slip n slide, the bounce house, a delicious barbecue, and the biggest cake I've ever seen at a one and two year old's party!! :) And of course, the company was great. We caught up with some old friends and made some new ones as well. And it was nice to spend the evening together as a family.

These pictures are out of order, but I don't think that really matters, does it?

payson and i playing with sidewalk chalk at the party

jack wishing the bigger kids would let him in to jump!!

the cutest, biggest cake ever!

why is this the only picture i got of jobi?
payson, jett, and sunni

jack being his cute self

jobi's cute center pieces; are you catching the theme??
payson and emma coming down the bounce house slide

Jack had been a little whiny and clingy during the week. He's been teething for a while, so I blamed the gums. However, when we got home from church on Sunday and I started to change him I noticed these pinkish red bumps and spots all over his chest and back and stomach and neck. None on the arms and legs or face. I showed my mom. She said, "It's probably Roseola".

After Grandma's diagnosis, we went downstairs for a second opinion: Google. The images and description on the google results were exact. The bumps, the slight fever, the puffy little eyes, the clinginess and whining.

Roseola is viral, so we just snuggled and watched him for a couple of days. As of Tuesday it was gone. Not too fun. But not too bad either.

So Saturday, my mom had tried long ago to pre-order Breaking Dawn. Apparently the customer service guy at Barnes and Noble ordered her the wrong book. So she sent me out to pick her up a copy as well as some groceries for Sunday dinner.

I had yet to order my copy. With all of our moving I wouldn't have known where to have it shipped. So I bargained. I'll run the errand, if I can read the book first! My mom was finishing another book anyway, so she agreed. I started Sunday night and have been the most negligent wife and mother since. I just finished.


I can say that it's my favorite of the books. But I can't say I don't like it either. I think New Moon is my favorite. I love romance, but I like a little reality, too. I like the darkness and tragedy. Does that make me a twisted? Maybe. But I think I just want some balance. I don't want 100% mush.

Anyway, at first I was a little annoyed with the book. During the whole honeymoon I wanted to vomit. Enough was enough. I do think Stephenie Meyer did a good job avoiding written porn. She was tasteful. But I could have lived with a little less of the sex. It just dragged on too many pages for me. But once I realized Bella was pregnant, I was intrigued. I kept thinking the book could go either way. She could lose me so easily, or this could get very interesting. Mostly, it got interesting.

I was glad Bella became a vampire early on. I didn't want to wonder for 754 pages. And I liked the intensity in the second half of the book. There was mystery, suspense, a little action, romance.

Naming the baby Renesmee? What was she thinking?! How corny was that!! I hated that. And the middle name just made it worse. And when Jacob imprinted on Renesmee? I wanted to vomit. I had...still have...a hard time with that. I think by the end I was a little more okay with it and understood it a little more, but really? I wanted him to imprint on Leah, to be honest. Renesmee? A little sick.

But I was a little disappointed with the resolve. I think the Volturi gave up too easily. I wished there had been more action. And I think I might have liked some more devastation on the good side. I know Irina died, but that wasn't enough. I think I honestly would have liked the book better if Bella had died protecting them or something. Not because I don't love her character, but I just think it would have been more balanced and made the story more believable for me. (Am I talking about BELIEVABLE in reference to a vampire book? Oh brother.)

I thought that Alice finding another half breed like Renesmee was stupid. It made it too easy for me. And honestly, I could have seen that convincing the Volturi even more that they needed to eliminate her. After the Amazon guy said his father was creating a super race? Wouldn't that have freaked the Volturi out considering they were obsessing over their own control and power? Oh well.

Anyway, all in all I liked it. I didn't end up hating it, which I honestly expected. I didn't think she would satisfy me. But in the end, I'm not craving more of the story and I still love the characters. Good, but not my favorite of the four books.

And enough of that. As silly as it is, I really want to know your DETAILED opinions of the book!! My life is that sad and I'm that into it. :)

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Yard Sale!!

I'm so excited!! Jason had to run his motorcycle to the shop this morning to get a new tire and on our way home I saw this moving sale. So we stopped in and took a peek. I've NEVER bought anything at a yard sale before, so it makes me a little nervous. The idea of buying someone's old clothes and stuff usually grosses me out. I don't really know why. Anyway, there were these two great, old dressers that I saw and I just kept thinking about how much fun it would be to repaint them and find some new hardware. They were in AWESOME condition and Payson has been outgrowing her toddler bed and sharing a tiny dresser with Jack so getting her furniture she can grow into has been on my mind lately. So we did it!! I bought my very first yard sale items!! I got both dressers (one even came with a great framed mirror) for $35! And then, they even drove them up to our house for us for an extra $5! So after a little TLC Payson will have some great new bedroom furniture!! Anyone know a great place for bedding??