July 20, 2017

That They May Be Humble

“We all have our demons beneath the roads we walk, yours’...have been waiting a long time.” Mycroft. Wendy once quoted Elder Bednar who said something along the lines of when we think we have no need of a warning that is the time we are in the greatest need of warning. These messages are both true and I should have taken the warning with more gravity than I did.
If you are reading this blog post then my divorce with Wendy has been finalized. It has been a little shy of three months now. I won’t attempt to describe the hurricane of emotion this event has caused in not only my life but of those around Wendy and I, let alone everything leading up to it. I am writing about this situation not because I want to, honestly I would rather only talk about it exclusively with friends and family as I don't know who else will read this post, but because I have felt prompted to do so. I know that people will wish to judge me or Wendy harshly for letting this situation happen. I humbly plead with those who would do so to remember the following two counsels from the Savior taken from the testimony of Matthew “For with what judgement ye judge, Ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” (Matthew 7:2) and “Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.” (Matthew 5:7). So I ask that you be merciful in judging either of us whether or not you think we deserve it. I have no intention of pointing fingers as it is not healthy nor productive to do so. I will state that I believe that the divorce came into being because of sins from both parties. In my post I will not discuss others sins, I will only discuss mine as on only those I can speak confidently. I am trying to abide by the philosophy “Let God judge between me and thee...”
The first of my sins that I will discuss is being critical. I am analytically minded and having a desire to understand things, I tend to mentally disect things. If I am in a bad mood I often resort to being critical of others and organizations. In either case I tend to be unfair and more often than not, my knowledge is usually rather incomplete. I will say that I have been guilty of doing this in a myriad of situations. With this in mind, I tend to try to offer constructive criticism or critiques whether or not others want them and this sin definitely contributed to my divorce.
Those who know me will know that I am passionate if nothing else. Because I am passionate I am not always as careful or as calculated with my words as I should be. This combined with the fact that I am analytically minded means that I can make incredibly biting remarks without much thought. If some of you know me as kind, as I hope at least some of you do, I hope you appreciate the fact that I am kind and nice intentionally rather than naturally. In high school I know my parents pointed out this fact and told me that I really needed to work on it. It is something I have had to and still consciously work on.
I took a marriage class once with Wendy and it analyzed how we tended to handle conflict. It stated that generally we have three stages. Mine are helpful, avoidance and fight. I mention this study only because I found it accurate for me personally. I found that generally if I feel like I have a point of conflict with people I tend to try and comprise or get incredibly helpful by offering them more inform about my opinion or view. If that fails then I avoid the topic or avoid going into any detail about the topic. I have termed this clamming up. I tend to do it when I am really hurting or depressed. It’s not healthy and it is something that I am working on overcoming.
I have anxiety about the future. I don’t like planning because I feel like for me personally it’s only rarely helpful. I generally don’t like thinking about the future or even setting goals as I feel like it’s often hard to achieve them. This is also something else that I am working on.
We all are lazy and I am definitely guilty of this sin too. I know that there were a few nights that I chose not to get up with the girls again because I was tired and I knew that I would need to get up for work the next day. To quote one of my favorite mantras and something I will hopefully soon have on a shirt, “Strength before weakness” I will make mine and own.
Last but certainly not least on my list is pride. I know someone will point out that this sin clearly is the foundation for the rest of them which is true. My pride has been focused on appearing good to others or being very concerned with what others think of me. I’m not talking about being considerate of others but more about being preoccupied with my “reputation” for lack of a better word. This problem has in turn led me to not be as emotionally vulnerable and get the support I needed.

November 15, 2015

Paying Attention and Loving

So many changes that have happened in over the year since I last posted. First we are in Utah and we doing better. Our little family has grown and we are blooming family of four. We are a fun and silly bunch which I'm glad to say that I learned from my family that I grew up in. Evelyn is a cute toddler who understands two languages, French and English, and speak one and a half. Julie Leanne joined our family four months ago and is a happy little girl who has thus far decided to Daddy's little girl and Evelyn has taken claim of Mommy.

I love to expound on the ways that our lives have gotten better but some of them are too personal to address on here. I will say that I have been doing some "Wii exercises" as one of my friends used to joke with me. I have also cut back on my reading which has helped me focus on families and friends. Wendy and I have made friends in our ward or congregation and we intend to only get more because we are greedy like that. I do want to say that I am married to my best friend who is wonderful and who is bent on helping me be a better man. I love flirting with her. Also if you haven't have listened to the song "Beauty and the Beast" it's awesome. My favorite line from it now is "learning you were wrong". I like it mainly because my first impression of the beautiful woman who would become my wife was not a positive one at first. I've had the good experience of learning just how wrong my first impression was of her.

I do want to mention that I am excited for the Pokémon Go App. I will only mention this topic in passing to warn anyone who might have an inclination of talking to me about it, as I might talk your ear off about that subject. I do want to mention that Brandon Sandersen has become my favorite author is another subject about which I could talk at length.

The title of my post is based on something I realized from an experience with my second daughter Julie. Wendy had just given birth to our daughter, I had clamped the cord and Julie was off to a great start. As always the nurses needed to check all of Julie's vitals and make sure that she was healthy and ensure that she could indeed survive on her own. I remember that there were three nurses checking all of the monitors and looking at Julie to make sure would be fine. In the midst of all of these screenings, I remember hearing Julie cry for probably the second time in her short little existence. I glanced at Wendy to ensure she was alright and then went over to little Julie. She was crying, red and flailing. I put my hand out to her and she grabbed my finger in her tiny little hand and suddenly stopped crying. As I reflected on this experience I realized that three very caring people were all paying attention to Julie but I had to reach out in love and that's what she felt. I think that we often tend to pay attention to what someone is saying or doing or we are thinking about our response. I think that we often forget the vital part that we need to love them. I'm not saying that things two things are mutually exclusive but I am saying that we tend to do one rather than the other. As both the Apostle Paul and the Book of Mormon prophet Moroni taught that if we don't have charity we are nothing. While we do need to pray for charity, I think that it is also important that we exercise the muscle that is love towards our brothers and sisters. I pray that as you go through out your week that you will exercise that muscle of love towards your neighbor. I know that as you do so you will touch the lives of others in positive ways and you will start to reflect the love our Heavenly Father and Christ to others.

August 4, 2014

Where True Richness Lies

It's been almost a year since I last posted. I really should stop trying to set some sort of personal record for how long I can go before I post. I would say that I was busy but that's not entirely true. I won't get into those details right now. The big news is that my little family and I moved to Georgia. And our little girl is almost nine months old.

For reasons I won't list here, my little family is on the low end financially. In the entire time that Wendy and I have been married I don't know that we've ever been poorer than we are currently. That being said, I've realized something. I've realized that I already am rich. I have riches that money can't buy. I'll list just a few of them here.

I have my wonderful daughter Evelyn. Her smile is a wonderful thing to which to wake up. I love watching her explore and learn about the world around her and her little laugh is worth thousands at least. I love watching her make new and different expressions; it's cool because then I realize that I am indeed dealing with a strange, new, tiny human being who is just starting to be capable of showing me her personality. I look forward to seeing more of it.

I am especially rich because I have my wife. I get to wake up to her beautiful face every morning. I get the opportunity everyday to love her and try and love her better than the day before. I get romance her everyday. I never realized how easy it is to court a new girl every couple of months until I've been dating my wife for over a year and a half; marriage is an awesome challenge in that respect. I get to have fun with her and hear her quips. I get to kiss her everyday. I get to eat her cooking which is on par with the French cuisine I had. Most of my reads should know what a compliment that it is in it's own right. I get to see her play with Evelyn as she makes her laugh. I love it.

I am also richly blessed to have my parents and siblings. My parents support and encourage me despite my failings. I love talking to my siblings and getting their different ideas. I know my siblings and I don't always have much in common but it is awesome to see how we've all changed and how in some odd way we've stayed the same.

I want to be clear to my reader that I do realize that I do need money to maintain my richness. I just want to help my reader understand that in my eyes, I am already richly blessed. I hope that y'all can recognize where your true richness lies! I love you and hope that you have a good life until next time I post!

September 22, 2013

Building Others

So I think that I should start with some updates. I finished my internship in Utah. It was really cool. I loved being able to contribute to a community. Wendy and I moved back up to Idaho. While I was down in Utah I made a shirt for a good friend of mine. It was the first shirt design that I'd ever done on my own. The quote on it is an inside joke from a double date with him and his wife.
Since moving back to Idaho, Wendy has started back to school and I've started back to work. We've made lots of friends in our new ward and we're really liking it. Also I made Wendy a shirt design after we got back. I have to admit, I really like making the designing because it gives me a creative outlet. Now I'm thinking about making more shirt designs.
Wendy and I have arranged our apartment and made general preparations for when our baby girl comes in a few months. We've been blessed to have all of our parents helping us out in that regard. One of my new favorite things is to put a hand on Wendy's stomach and feel our little girl kicking or moving. Wendy and I have discovered that we like eating at Frontier Pies. We both really like their pies.

My spiritual thought comes from our Gospel Doctrine teacher at church. Every Sunday he gives his lesson and finds a way to emphasize helping others out. Each week he asks us if we have experiences from the previous week on how we've helped others. Recently I've realized that the whole goal of the Gospel of Christ is to help others. Christ's teachings uplift us and help us to understand how to teach everyone but I think the ultimate goal of His teachings and actions was to show us how to help others. This week it is my goal to be more like my Savior and try to help those around me. A friend of mine once told me that I was a "builder" or someone who tried to build others up. At the time I believe I did a better job at "building". I want to challenge y'all to try to help build those around you then let me know how you did. I hope y'all have a great week!

July 14, 2013

Enabled by Grace

I'd like to offer my sincere apologies for having not written sooner. After my last post I got an internship down in Utah and moved down there. It's been very exciting to work with local city government to get necessary things accomplished. I'm looking forward to seeing how my work influences the city decisions. Also my wife, Wendy and I are expecting our first child later this year. We're very excited about welcoming our little girl into our new family. Wendy and I also visited Idaho about a month ago to visit friends and family. I'm close to finishing up my internship. I'm currently reading the Foundation series and Dad is rereading it.

My sister Catherine has a skill for making shirts and Onesies. At my request a few months ago she taught me how to make them. I came up with a design and then most of the execution with her careful oversight. This is the result.

The concept comes from one of my favorite TV shows the Avatar: the Last Airbender.
Here are two other shirts Catherine's made for me.

The above one is also from Avatar.

This shirt comes from a book called "The Little Prince". The quote on the back reads "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye". The quote is in French because I wanted a shirt with French on it that wasn't something mundane like "J'aime Paris" or "I love Paris".

So I came across a concept that I really like. It came from a talk in the last April session of LDS General Conference. The talk was by Elder Cardon entitled "The Savior Wants to Forgive". I liked the concept so much that I made it into a diagram which makes me feel like I understand it pretty well. Elder Cardon explains that if we seek the Lord's grace that it will be granted to us and make weak things strong. Endowed with this grace we are then capable of accomplishing tasks that we normally would not be able to do alone. It's a really simple message but it was something that really stuck out to me. It's something that I really believe to me true because I've searched for grace and been enabled to do things that I never thought I would be able to do.

I hope y'all have a good week!

March 25, 2013

Going Home

So I have a confession. I've lied. I didn't know the meaning of busy until I got married... Oh yeah, for those of you who missed it. I got married to my best friend Wendy. She is crazy like me so we have some pretty awesome times. I was planning on writing this post several times in the course of the last three months but things kept coming up. I will say that being married is a lot of fun though.

I'll do a brief summary of what's been going on in my life. I got married. We got an apartment. Wendy started another semester and I started a new job. Wendy and I went our friends Sean and Liz to a Valetine's day stake party. Wendy and I hang out with friends and sometimes family. We had my brother-in-law Gregory here which was fun. We had to go down to Utah to pick him up so we stopped by to see my family. Also I got my sister Catherine hooked to Percy Jackson & the Heroes of Olympus series. I'm working on getting an internship down in Utah for the summer. Now for some pictures.

And here is a picture from the Valentine's day dance.

My thought this week comes from a quiet moment today. Today I sat outside the Rexburg temple. I haven't been there this entire semester which is the longest that I've been without it since I was on my mission. I'm not gonna lie, I miss going there. Sitting there on a cool quiet day reminded me that it was really here that I felt like I was home for the first time in this small town. I was reminded that the temple is in part a reminder that one day we'll all go home one day or another. Our time here is time to get prepared to go back home to our Heavenly Father. This life is a temporarily sojourn in which we must learn, grow, and "write home" as frequently as we can. If you haven't talked to your Heavenly Father recently, I recommend it. I know that He always wants to hear from you and sometimes if you listen He has something to say. I hope y'all have a great week!

December 9, 2012


For starters, I'm alive. It's been over two months since I posted. They have been crazy busy for the most part. I apologize for not writing sooner. Either I remembered and didn't have time or I forgot; the last few weeks have been a lot of the former. I'm very sorry guys.

Well, what to tell you.... I've been doing school stuff, work, wedding stuff and sometimes relaxing. Since last time, Wendy and I went to a Mormon Tabernacle Choir concert on campus. Wendy was super happy to go and we had really good seats. Wendy and I also went down to my parents house for General Conference and Thanksgiving. Both of those were really good and I was glad to spend time with my family and my darling Wendy. These last couple months have been full of ups and downs.

Today, going to church was a bittersweet experience. It was sweet because it was my last Sunday in a single's ward. While I have really enjoyed being in that ward, I won't miss the competition that seems to go on in a single's ward. At the same time, it was a bitter experience because it was my last time in the 67th ward. The ward that has become my home ward having been in it for two years. The experience was embittered more by the fact that the man who's been my Bishop for two years got released today. I won't deny it, that man has become my friend because he's helped me in some of my toughest moments. I will note that I was pleased to have him do an important interview for me today which was very touching because he's not just my Bishop, he's my friend.

Well, I should say that I'm really happy to be finishing up school this week and heading home for bit. Then from there I get to fly home with my darling Wendy to meet her family. And a few weeks after that I get to marry my best friend!

My spiritual thought this week comes from a reflection that I had during sacrament meeting. I realized one of the reasons that this ward has become my favorite and my home ward. It is because of all the friends that I've made here. Something I've really come to appreciate over the last few days are the friends that I have. They are really great people and I love them dearly. They have helped me and more often than they know they have changed my life for the better. As Sister Dalton once said in a devotional here on campus, everyone in your life is there for a purpose. I know that this is definitely true of my friends and I'm grateful to have them in my life. I hope y'all can recognize that your friends are gifts from God and I hope you let them know how much you love and appreciate them! Have a good week!

P.S. I've stop talking about what books I'm reading because I'm pretty sure no one really cares. Let me know if you wanted it included. If not I'll leave that part out.