Sunday, December 27, 2015

moment of clarity

For as long as I can remember, my Grandpa had dementia. He often said silly things and was usually incoherent. But I loved him deeply. I loved Grandpa for being a faithful follower of Jesus Christ and for dedicating his life to service in the church and in his family. He and Grandma eloped to the Swiss LDS Temple and he was fiercely loyal to her and his children. He worked as a dentist for many years. He served a mission as a young man and later two more with Grandma. Grandpa was a kind-hearted man and he knew and loved the scriptures.

Three years ago, on Christmas eve, I was in Santa Maria with my family. We kneeled to say a prayer, me right in front of Grandpa. Being a Patriarch, he placed his hands on my head and asked for my name. We explained to him that we were only saying a prayer. He seemed flustered but continued to pronounce a beautiful blessing upon me and my family. After the blessing, my uncle offered a prayer and we went back to whatever it was we were doing.

Grandpa invited me to the corner of the room to talk. In complete coherence, he gave me very specific and personal advice about what I needed to do to be happy. He told me he loved me and soon after fell back into his normal Grandpa ways. I will never forget the advice he gave me and the love and respect I felt for him in those moments.

Grandpa passed away on November 3, 2015. I was fortunate enough to be able to travel to Santa Maria with my family and hear more about the life of the man who made my life the way it is.

Friday, October 30, 2015

"NEXT" and #ponderizing about hope

So my apartment has experienced 4 break ups in the past week and a half and it's been pretty discouraging all around.

Over the summer I almost dated someone, but things didn't work out. I was expressing my frustrations to my parents and my dad said: "I have the perfect four-letter word for this situation, and that four-letter word is: NEXT!" It was easy then because I knew that Heavenly Father had something better in store for me.

But it's not always that easy. Sometimes there's not a clear "next" and we have to wander in darkness for a while.

My #ponderize scripture for the week comes from Romans 8:

"For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?

But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it."

If we know what it is that we're hoping for, then it's not real hope. God wants us to hope in Him! The second we define what it is that we want, we're limiting our faith and limiting His capacity to bless us.

The following verses read:

"Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God."

When we pray, we need only show our love and devotion for God. We don't need to verbalize what it is that we need, because often we don't know. The Spirit makes intercession for us by helping us feel confident that God will bless us with something better than we can comprehend. We have to hold onto that hope, patiently waiting for whatever or whoever is "next."

"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."

Sunday, October 25, 2015

The God who weeps.

I took a walk to the temple today and was expressing my feelings to my Heavenly Father. I told Him: "Don't you know how I'm feeling? Don't you know how sad I am?"

And without missing a beat, His voice came so clearly to my mind: "Don't you know that I'm sad too?"


God validates us. He can't justify sin, but He knows and understands how we feel. God made some beautiful plans in my life, but because of circumstances outside of my control, they all fell apart. God weeps with me. He knows what I'm feeling because He's feeling it too. And though He can see the big picture, and He knows what's coming next, He has enough love to pause with me for a few moments. 

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

C.S. Lewis

"The water was as clear as anything and I thought if I could get in there and bathe it would ease the pain in my leg. but the lion told me I must undress first. Mind you, I don't know if he said any words out loud or not. 

I was just going to say that I couldn't undress because I hadn't any clothes on when I suddenly thought that dragons are snaky sort of things and snakes can cast their skins. Oh, of course, thought I, that's what the lion means. So I started scratching myself and my scales began coming off all over the place. And then I scratched a little deeper and , instead of just scales coming off here and there, my whole skin started peeling off beautifully, like it does after an illness, or as if I was a banana. In a minute or two I just stepped out of it. I could see it lying there beside me, looking rather nasty. It was a most lovely feeling. So I started to go down into the well for my bathe.

But just as I was going to put my feet into the water I looked down and saw that they were all hard and rough and wrinkled and scaly just as they had been before. Oh, that's all right, said I, it only means I had another smaller suit on underneath the first one, and I'll have to get out of it too. So I scratched and tore again and this underskin peeled off beautifully and out I stepped and left it lying beside the other one and went down to the well for my bathe.

Well, exactly the same thing happened again. And I thought to myself, oh dear, how ever many skins have I got to take off? For I was longing to bathe my leg. So I scratched away for the third time and got off a third skin, just like the two others, and stepped out of it. But as soon as I looked at myself in the water I knew it had been no good.

The the lion said - but I don't know if it spoke - 'You will have to let me undress you.' I was afraid of his claws, I can tell you, but I was pretty nearly desperate now. So I just lay flat down on my back to let him do it. 

The very first tear he made was so deep that I thought it had gone right into my heart. And when he began pulling the skin off, it hurt worse than anything I've ever felt. The only thing that made me able to bear it was just the pleasure of feeling the stuff peel off. You know - if you've ever picked the scab of a sore place. It hurts like billy-oh but it is such fun to see it coming away.

Well, he peeled the beastly stuff right off - just as I thought I'd done it myself the other three times, only they hadn't hurt - and there it was lying on the grass: only ever so much thicker, and darker, and more knobbly-looking than the others had been. And there was I as smooth and soft as a peeled switch and smaller than I had been. Then he caught hold of me - I didn't like that much for I was very tender underneath now that I'd no skin on - and threw me into the water. It smarted like anything but only for a moment. After that it became perfectly delicious and as soon as I started swimming and splashing I found that all the pain had gone from my arm. And then I saw why. I'd turned into a boy again. "

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Eternal truth and the theory of relativity.

Jesus es  mi Luz!
So I set a goal to write in my blog at least once a week, and I admittedly haven’t been very good at it since classes started.

SPEAKING OF CLASSES, I have this awesome class named Physical Science 100 that I should have taken as a freshman but didn’t. As most of you know, I’m REALLY academically minded. (That's the fancy way of saying I'm a smarty pants.) I've always done very well in school in all subjects except science. I’m really enjoying this class because I’m beginning to understand science concepts that have previously been mysterious to me--and that’s mostly because I’m putting a concentrated effort into it. I feel like Alma 12:

“It is given unto many to know the mysteries of God; nevertheless they are laid under a strict command that they shall not impart only according to the portion of his word which he doth grant unto the children of men, according to the heed and diligence which they give unto him.

“And therefore, he that will harden his heart, the same receiveth the lesser portion of the word; and he that will not harden his heart, to him is given the greater portion of the word, until it is given unto him to know the mysteries of God until he know them in full.”

It's pretty exciting to finally understand this stuff:) If science came to me as naturally as mathematics and social sciences do, I would totally study neuroscience or something along those lines.

GETTING TO THE POINT…We’ve been discussing theories of relativity and how motion is only relative to a frame of reference. For example, if I’m driving (in my Mini) in uniform motion at 70 mph on I-15 North, I won’t feel any acceleration. That’s why we can sit in a car without feeling the force of 70 mph. It’s as if I’m not moving at all. If I see another car driving 70 mph on I-15 South, they will appear to me as if they’re driving at 140 mph, because I’m in uniform motion. To the pedestrian watching from the side, we’re driving 70 mph in opposite directions. And I’m going 140 mph in the Mini from the perspective of my friend on I-15 South. So who is right? According to the theory of relativity, we’re all correct! See? IT’S ALL RELATIVE! Size, time, and motion, especially at super high speeds, depend on a frame of reference.

 Because I'll take any excuse to mention what I drive. #minilove

There is only thing that is unaffected by the theory of relativity and that is LIGHT! No matter what speed or direction I’m traveling, light will always travel at the speed of light, which is roughly 670,000,000 mph. My frame of reference doesn't matter--light is constant. 

In Section 88 of the Doctrine and Covenants (one of my favorites...) it says:

"The light which shineth, which giveth you light, is through him who enlighteneth your eyes, which is the same light that quickeneth your understandings;

"Which light proceedeth forth from the presence of God to fill the immensity of space.

"The light which is in all things, which giveth life to all things, which is the law by which all things are governed, even the power of God who sitteth upon his throne."

I know that God is the source of all truth, light, and goodness. It is that power that literally makes the world go round! Despite differences in frames of reference, God's light does not and cannot change. Truth is NOT relative. Public opinion and legislation will never alter the eternal laws of God. I speak specifically on issues that relate to the family: abortion, homosexual behavior, fornication, pornography, and infidelity will never be right. 

I know that when we give heed and diligence to God's word, He will open up mysteries to us and illuminate our path. I know that God loves us and wants us to walk daily in His light. Even though the world changes, God's love never will!

Also, here's a great Mormon Message about God's light! I haven't always felt close to God, but I know that He's always reaching to us :) http://www.mormonchannel.org/watch/series/mormon-messages/the-hope-of-gods-light

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Whenever I take a selfie, I don't know where I'm supposed to look.

I love Claire.
Not so politically correct here with my Redskins shirt.


At a parade with my dad:)
Fabian, one of my favorite investigators:)
Ute Stampede with some cousins and Uncle Jase.

charity is the pure love of CHRIST!

I'm so grateful for my missionary experience! My mission president, President E. Brad Wilson, was key in helping me develop a deep love for my Savior and my Heavenly Father. That love defines who I am and how I feel about myself. 


"The thing that energizes the doctrine of Christ, 
the thing that informs the doctrine of Christ, 
the thing that exalts the doctrine of Christ, 
is the life of Christ.

I pray that you will have an eternal love affair with the life of the Son of God.

I pray that you will teach your missionaries to love:
everything He did, 
everywhere He went, 
everything He said, 
and everything He is.

And if they love Him, the doctrine of Christ will be the most automatic thing in the world they will teach out of the life of Christ.

I would walk on hot lava, I would drink broken glass,
 to find one more word, one more phrase, one more doctrine, any parable that anyone could give me of the life of Christ the living Son of the living God.

So the doctrine of Christ means everything to me as a result of that feeling for the author of the doctrine of Christ. May your missionaries come home with that kind of affection forever."

-Elder Jeffrey R. Holland
New Mission President Seminar
June 2013

Sunday, August 16, 2015

It is not good that man should be alone.

Querida familia y otros amigos,

I've had a few thoughts in recent weeks that have led me to a testimony of this phrase from the scriptures: "And I, the Lord God, said unto mine Only Begotten, that it was not good that man should be alone" (Moses 3:18). I think this applies to both men and women, but especially to men!

FIRST

My Dad has mentioned that right before meeting my Mom, he was freaking out about not ever getting married. He turned 24 a few days before the wedding. To me, that seems like a decent age to get married. Most of the guys I associate with or date are around that age. (Actually, most of them are older, haha. I haven't been on a date with someone my age since my freshman year of college!) The General Authorities have real concerns about the RMs of the Church delaying marriage because it's a real thing!

My thought was as follow: Do these guys ever get tired of going home to a bunch of roommates? A lot of them are graduates and have careers. Do they ever feel like they should be going home to a wife and kid(s) instead of other, single 20-somethings? Because sometimes I go home from work and make myself dinner and feel lonely--as if I should be making dinner for two. (Sorry if that was cheesy.)

Anyway, I know that some of them are earnestly striving to get married. Others, however, have become too comfortable with the bachelor lifestyle and/or are too picky. Even Elder Holland was a work-in-progress when he got married! (Though he's nearly perfect now...just sayin.)

SECOND

I went to a Padres baseball game while in San Diego with my parents. Throughout the game, they kept showing people on the jumbo-tron. And of course, once the people on the screen saw themselves, they would freak out or kiss or whatever. I started to notice a trend with the men who showed up on the screen. They were typically in one of two categories: Some of the men were there with "the guys." They were almost always drinking and would hold up their budlight to show it off to the jumbo-tron. To be honest, they looked like real idiots. The other men were at the game with a wife/girlfriend and kids. These men looked sober and happy! They were truly enjoying the game and the people they were with! 

Of course this isn't exhaustive research...just some observations I made. I came to the conclusion that men need families to ground them. Not because they're wild animals and they can't control themselves, but something about patriarchal service makes them better. And like I said, they looked much happier. The kind of happy that alcohol can't offer!

THIRD

This thought is for both men and women. I heard a great quote about Adam and Eve from Elder Pace: "Adam's ability to obtain the purification necessary to get back into the presence of God was dependent upon his continuous association with Eve." I have come to the understanding that developing Christlike attributes requires spending time with other people. Patience, love and charity, humility, virtue, etc. are all formed as we have meaningful experiences with the Lord, family members, friends, and other acquaintances. 

I think back to my mission. I had a few hours every morning to study the Gospel. Though I cherished that time, I recognize that most of my growth came from leaving the apartment and truly living the Gospel. Of course God wants us to read His word! But I don't believe that he expects us to spend all day every day just reading. The scriptures are full of verbs! Part of living the Gospel joyfully is actually living. It is not good that man (or woman) should be alone because we need each other to refine those Christlike attributes that are necessary for a Celestial life.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Santa Maria and San Diego!

I just got back from a wonderful week long road trip to California with my parents! It's fun being a third wheel with them;)

Here are the highlights:

When we were about to leave Santa Maria, I snuck inside to say one last goodbye to my Grandpa. It was him and me alone in the room and he was sleeping. I had the feeling that it would likely be the last time I ever see my grandpa. I told him that I loved him and I heard him breathe out "I love you." (My grandpa rarely says anything coherent, so this was a huge deal to me!) I really love him and will miss him so much.

On Friday morning I called Evan (my cousin) and said that I wanted to do something fun. He picked me up from the hotel and we went to Coronado Island together! We caught lots of crabs and played in the tide pools then in the water. It was super sparkly and glittery with all those fake gold specks. I love the beach!:)

I went to the San Diego Temple in La Jolla with my parents on Thursday night. I've done baptisms there twice, but this was my first session! The Celestial room was amazing! Same with the atrium. The temple is true!:)

And of course Seaport Village, Old Town,  a Padres game, etc. I can't wait to go back:)





Monday, August 3, 2015

Lehi City Council primary election



Well, if you didn't already know that I geek about things like this, here ya go. All I really want to do is make a good difference in the world. I recently returned from my mission, so I'm not completely up-to-date on what's going on in Lehi, but I feel like my background in debate and my prior service as county delegate qualifies me to make a decent recommendation on who you should vote for!:)

What I look for in a candidate...

Like I said, I'm not super aware of all that's happened in the past 22 or so months. I'm looking for a candidate who IS! Political, civic, business, and/or civil engineering experience are also important. After researching all of the candidate's websites, I came to the conclusion that the three biggest issues are: (1) our water resources (or lack thereof), (2) parks and recreation, and (3) developing infrastructure to keep up with new businesses. (Fun fact: the business corridor between Thanksgiving Point and 1200 E is the fastest growing in the nation!) They also all love Lehi, which isn't hard because Lehi is so lovable.

Anyway, I decided to call as many of the candidates as possible so that I could talk with them. I wanted to hear who could explain to me the issues that matter. I feel that being able to express themselves easily and offer real solutions would be important in a city council setting. I was able to speak with four of the eight candidates. (One candidate didn't have their number available, and I didn't see a point in calling the incumbents because their positions are best reflected by their time in office.)

Who I'm voting for...

PAIGE ALBRECHT

Paige is my top vote! She has been attending the city council meetings for the past four years. She's served on the Planning Commission, PTA, UTA board of something important, Board of Adjustments, Round-Up Committee, Arts Council, something to do with Miss Lehi, etc. She was the most knowledgeable of all the candidates when it came to the issues. Paige had real ideas on how and where to provide more water. She was very personable and seems like she would be easy to work with.

WAYNE LOGAN

Wayne comes from the business world. He doesn't have a ton of civic/political experience from what I researched and talked with him about, but he offered solutions on solving the infrastructure issue. Lehi City updates its master plan every five years. With the growth we're seeing, Wayne recommended that the master plan is updated every year. He also understands the importance of better communication between city departments, which I believe will resolve water and park issues. In addition, he sounded very educated and able to get things done.

BILL CONLEY

Bill also has a business background and was so successful that he retired early. That was a huge plus to me because he'll have more time to serve! He's been involved with the Board of Adjustments and lots of other service projects around Lehi City. He spent a lot of time on the phone with me, which I appreciated, and is concerned with making sure Lehi citizens are informed of city council decisions. I feel like he's a represent-Lehi-to-the-council and not a represent-the-council-to-Lehi kind of person, if that makes any sense.

**To be fair, I didn't have the opportunity to speak with Ted Omer, and I'm going out of town this week. He seems to be a fairly popular candidate and I'm confident he'll make it to the final election in November. Just because I supported a candidate in the primary does not mean I will support them again in the final election. I hope this was helpful:) 

For more information, visit the Lehi City website: http://www.lehi-ut.gov/government/election-information/

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Something I appreciate in my bff:)

Clarissa and I met as roommates at BYU about 3 years ago. We became instant friends:) we served missions at the same time in Virginia and North Carolina and now Clarissa is getting married!

One thing I admire about Clarissa is that she can look at situations objectively, especially in dating and relationships. When I tell her about something that's going on, she doesn't immediately jump to my side. She evaluates the situation from both perspectives. Then, of course, she tells me that she trusts my judgment. I love that!

I wish more people were like Clarissa. I love you and you will always be my #eternalroommate ♡

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Feeling lonely?


Hahahahahaha:)

So I've been reflecting on relationships and people and dating, which is something that just kind of happens to singles living in Provo, especially when they teach marriage and family prep in Sunday School. I don't particularly feel lonely, though it was a challenge when I first returned from my mission. I do, however, feel that lack-of-eternal-companion-ness haha. ANYWAY, it will happen when it happens:) and that's what I felt like writing about today.

I had a little "almost relationship" when I was VERY fresh-off-the-mish. It obviously didn't work out and the break off left me feeling confused about God's timing for me. I kept praying and asking: when?? And who???

After a while, I asked to be able to see it from my Heavenly Father's perspective. I can't really remember what it feels like to fall in love, but I like to imagine how God will feel when I meet the right guy. I am confident that at the precise moment, He'll put someone wonderful in my path. I imagine that He'll be so excited and happy for me! He'll say, "I told you so! I told you it'd be worth it!" And I will be so grateful for every other time it didn't work out.

Yes, cheesy, I know. But I truly believe that. I know that Heavenly Father is loving. I know Him. He wants us to be happy and has created a perfect plan with that end in mind!

Friday, July 17, 2015

Thoughts on the war in heaven, political correctness, and a Modest Proposal.

I remember being told in high school by friends or other debaters that we needed to legalize gay marriage or recreational drugs so that people had agency. Because if I didn't feel that way, I was supporting "Satan's plan," which was to force God's children to be righteous.

This interpretation of "Satan's plan" is not founded in the scriptures or words of the Prophets.

What we learn from Moses 4:3 is that Satan "sought to destroy the agency of man." Agency exists because there are varying consequences to our actions. (Opposition in all things.) Satan continues the war in this life. When public opinion or legislation seeks to eliminate negative consequences to immoral choices, agency is limited.

For a relevant example, calling abortion the termination of a fetus does not change what it really is: the taking of a human life. James Johnson said, "human depravity is such that men will attempt to justify their own cruelty by accusing their victims of being lower than human." When public opinion (or the "loud minority" as Elder Perry called them) can succeed in this political correctness, Satan rejoices. And scripturally speaking, he probably actually just laughs.

I listened to a woman on the radio today explain that abortion was okay because of Roe v Wade. Let's be clear...we cannot legislate morality! God is the source of all truth and light and no law can determine what is or isn't right.

So Planned Parenthood. If you haven't seen the video yet, it is revolting. In many ways it has made me think of the famous satire "A Modest Proposal" by Jonathan Swift, in which he recommends that the poor Irish sell their children as food in order to sustain themselves. No, I don't think Planned Parenthood sells infant organs to be eaten. The point is, the ends don't justify the means if the means involve taking and exploiting the life of a helpless human being.

Why am I pro-life? Because I believe in God and He has taught me that His children matter.

Links of note:



A Modest Proposal by Jonathan Swift

Baby born at 24 weeks (abortion is legal up to 24 weeks.)



Thursday, July 16, 2015

For the days I miss my little sister.

We love the beach:)
I I love dancing with Millie!
she ALWAYS wins.
When I moved out.
D.C. temple:)
my sister is kind of brown.
When we went on a road trip with Unlce Jase!
when we were moving.

***

 Millie and I missed each other by 6 weeks. I'm so grateful she chose to serve a mission! The Japanese are so blessed to have her:)

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

arise and shine forth!


so much #shiny
Last week I had the wonderful opportunity to hear from one of my heroes--Sister Elaine Dalton! Her message centered around being saved for the final days (#chosengeneration) and living virtuously to fulfill that calling. She also said some cute things like "I'd love to hug you because you are my people and I adore you" and "by mile 17 all I want is a cheeseburger."

One thing Sister Dalton shared that really impressed me comes from Doctrine & Covenants 138:53-56, where the Prophet Joseph F. Smith saw a vision of the Spirit World. Among the leaders of the restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in the latter days, the Prophet saw "other choice spirits who were reserved to come forth in the fulness of times...[He] observed that they were also among the noble and great ones who were chosen in the beginning." Wow!:) It's humbling to think that I was once in a position among such faithful people! I hope I will always live up to that potential!


I love Sister Dalton and I'm so grateful for the influence she has on my personal commitment to virtue! "I believe that one virtuous young man or young woman, led by the Spirit, can change the world! And the world needs to be changed."

Sunday, July 5, 2015

If he only knew...

I often find myself wishing that people just knew. Because if they did, I believe they would treat me better. But this shouldn't be exclusively about me. What if we treated others assuming that they have something that they wish we would just know, believing that if we did know we would treat them better? Shouldn't we just treat people better anyway?

I have come to understand that the only thing that should justify who I am and how I treat others is my faith. I'm not who I am because of what it is that I wish others would just know. I'm who I am because I believe in Jesus Christ and I act daily on that faith. So it doesn't really matter if they don't know because it can't justify me anyway. The only approval I seek to obtain comes from he who not only understands me perfectly, but has the power to change me.


"Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
And patience, experience; and experience, hope:
And hope maketh not ashamed."

Friday, July 3, 2015

So this one time I hiked to the top of Mount Timpanogos, slid down a glacier, and jumped into a freezing cold lake:)

Whenever I spend time in nature, I feel closer to God. One of my favorite stories in the Old Testament comes from Joshua 14. Because of Caleb's faithfulness, he was allowed to choose whatever portion of the promised land he desired most. He selected Hebron, knowing that he'd have to fight off enemies to obtain it. Caleb chose a mountain:)

It's my earnest desire to always seek and receive opportunities to be close to my Heavenly Father, even if it requires climbing a mountain!

What are men compared to rocks and mountains?

Monday, June 29, 2015

things you probably didn't know about me.


My left rib cage is slightly deformed.
I was born 3 weeks early:) you're welcome, Mommy.
I like window shopping in office supply stores
The first time I submitted mission papers, I was turned down for medical reasons. I can't imagine what my life would be like if I hadn't been able to serve!
Sharks are my favorite animal! Especially hammerheads:)
I also really really like flamingos and pandas and elephants.
I made a girl cry in a debate round when I was 15 and have since been known among the debate team as "the girl who makes girls cry"
I was in the choir for the General Young Women's Broadcast in March 2010
Dana Point is probably my most favorite place in the whole world!
I've always had an on/off relationship with milk, and it's been "off" since junior year of high school.
My trainer introduced me to soy and almond milk. She's the best:)
I prefer talk radio to other radio stations (105.7)
My declared major was neuroscience when I applied to BYU...Lol:)
I've read the Book of Mormon 3.5 times in Spanish
I have never turned down Sunny D
I'm a complete Daddy's girl, but I tell Mom more stuff;)
Also my Dad once told me that I'm his favorite daughter so that's neat...
I considered applying to Yale but backed out last minute
I served as a county delegate for the Utah County Republican Party
One of my nicknames is "Maggie"
I've seen every episode of That's So Raven except one!
There's a 99% chance that my ACT score was equal to or higher than yours;)
I basically eat rice with every meal.
I'm kind of jealous of all the attention my niece gets...;)
Cinnamon is my favorite flavor of gum, mouth wash, toothpaste, candy, etc.
I love public speaking!
I'm the only person in my family with blue eyes
I've read "The Prince" by Machiavelli three times so watch out!
My cousin passed away on my 4th birthday and I feel a special love for him and his family because of it.
I went to five different elementary schools
My dream car is a Ford Ranger
I still sleep with a stuffed animal...Bacca, the sheep:) thanks Clarissa.
I keep a football in the back of my car just in case.
I only wear blue, gray, black, white, and occasionally green. You will never catch me in pink, orange, yellow, or red.
Some people on my mission called me "Hermana Crandallucha"
I always wear my hair down because I don't like my ears
My car has broken down 5 times since coming home from my mission...nothing stresses me out like car stress.
I love cemeteries! They are the perfect place to go on a walk or run.
When I was in high school, my hair reached longer than my hips.
I'm quarter Asian/Pacific Islander...I love Polynesian dance:)

Thursday, June 18, 2015

"better than I deserve"

Harrisonburg, Virginia
Over the past ten weeks, since returning home from my full-time mission, I have prayed and prayed that God would put good things in my life. I've had a very difficult time adjusting to "normal life," but I feel so powerfully that God has answered my prayers in astounding ways. I feel to confess that His plan is always so much better than mine. He has blessed me with two great jobs, a loving family, good health, and wonderful friends. As much as I miss my mission, I feel overwhelmed at all of the blessings that have come because of my simple offering. I know that God lives, loves us, and is desirous to grant us with things much better than we deserve.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

LIBRE SOY.

And I'm not even talking about that one song from Frozen in Spanish that Elsa sings when she runs away into mountains which movie I finally saw a few weeks ago after coming home from my mission even though I already knew all of the words because Hermana Sprunt had the album in Spanish and we occasionally listened to it while driving through Richmond last Fall. (But I don't know the words in English yet.)

No, I'm talking about ME being FREE.

Letting it go. (Without all that gross snow stuff.)

Late Friday night I was driving home to Lehi after work while listening to a song about the Savior. And it. hit. me. I am free. Because of the perfect atonement of Jesus Christ, I am free. 

I reflected on all of my past insecurities and anxieties that held me bound for years--all of which the atonement has so mercifully removed from my life. Like, it doesn't even hurt anymore. I feel so pleased with the person I've become and the person I've becoming! I know the atonement is real because I've felt it change me.


Sunday, June 7, 2015

autoestima

I came to the most liberating and annoying realization while on my mission:

That self-esteem is what I think of myself.

How different would your life be if you believed all of the good things people said about you?

Here's a little excerpt from a General Conference address given by Elder Klebingat last October:

"Take responsibility for your own spiritual well-being. Stop blaming others or your circumstances, stop justifying, and stop making excuses... Accept that you are “free according to the flesh” and “free to choose liberty and eternal life” (2 Nephi 2:27). The Lord knows your circumstances perfectly, but He also knows perfectly well whether you simply choose not to fully live the gospel. If that is the case, be honest enough to admit it, and strive to be perfect within your own sphere of circumstances. Spiritual confidence increases when you take responsibility for your own spiritual well-being by applying the Atonement of Jesus Christ daily."

I think the same idea applies to not just spiritual confidence, but every other type of confidence as well. We're solely responsible for how we feel about ourselves. Other people can say nice or mean things, but we choose what we will believe. I know that as we apply the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we can come to a clearer understanding of who we truly are and who we are capable of becoming.