Monday, July 30


I heard this story at institute this past week and have been thinking about it ever since. 

Some years ago President David O. McKay (1873–1970) told of the experience of some of those in the Martin handcart company. Many of these early converts had emigrated from Europe and were too poor to buy oxen or horses and a wagon. They were forced by their poverty to pull handcarts containing all of their belongings across the plains by their own brute strength. President McKay related an occurrence which took place some years after the heroic exodus:
"A teacher, conducting a class, said it was unwise ever to attempt, even to permit them [the Martin handcart company] to come across the plains under such conditions."
Then President McKay quoted an observer who was present in that class: "Some sharp criticism of the Church and its leaders was being indulged in for permitting any company of converts to venture across the plains with no more supplies or protection than a handcart caravan afforded.
"An old man in the corner . . . sat silent and listened as long as he could stand it, then he arose and said things that no person who heard him will ever forget. His face was white with emotion, yet he spoke calmly, deliberately, but with great earnestness and sincerity.
"In substance [he] said, 'I ask you to stop this criticism. You are discussing a matter you know nothing about. Cold historic facts mean nothing here, for they give no proper interpretation of the questions involved. Mistake to send the Handcart Company out so late in the season? Yes. But I was in that company and my wife was in it and Sister Nellie Unthank whom you have cited was there, too. We suffered beyond anything you can imagine and many died of exposure and starvation, but did you ever hear a survivor of that company utter a word of criticism? . . .
" 'I have pulled my handcart when I was so weak and weary from illness and lack of food that I could hardly put one foot ahead of the other. I have looked ahead and seen a patch of sand or a hill slope and I have said, I can go only that far and there I must give up, for I cannot pull the load through it.' "
He continues: " 'I have gone on to that sand and when I reached it, the cart began pushing me. I have looked back many times to see who was pushing my cart, but my eyes saw no one. I knew then that the angels of God were there.
" 'Was I sorry that I chose to come by handcart? No. Neither then nor any minute of my life since. The price we paid to become acquainted with God was a privilege to pay, and I am thankful that I was privileged to come in the Martin Handcart Company.' "

There are a lot of experiences in my life that haven't been easy.
But when I let them pull me closer to my Heavenly Father, they become sacred and so incredibly worth it. 

Story found here

Sunday, July 22


I just came across the best quote.

"Bear true witness, even if it be against yourself, your parents or your family."
~Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Infidel

Just think about it. 
Tell me your thoughts.
I have mine and they are SO GOOD.

I feel like the hardest one is bearing witness against yourself.

Yeah 7xs! (Because 3 is not enough. And because I miss Liz.)

Today was great for me. 
Let me tell you why.

1. I got to see these ladies. 

And it's been a long time since we've been all together. 
It was so lovely to see their beautiful faces and to remember how much love and fun we had growing up.
Yeah for weddings!
(I feel like that's the only time we see each other any more. Not for long. We're gonna plan a fun San Francisco trip to visit Alissa soon. Woot woot!)

2. Brother and Marc visited.
And made me giggle like I haven't in a few weeks.
Those boys are super funny.
My favorite was when they followed me around the grocery store pretending to be secret agents in their suits. 
Tee hee they are grrrrrrreat!
Yeah for silly brothers!

3. I got in a nice big dose of my Long Talks with Troy. 
I could have those all night, every night.
I love my sleep.
A lot.
But I think I would rather talk to him. 
Yeah for good friends!
(And for the Emotional Process of Change. And for vulnerability. And for California Speed.)

4. Sammy emailed me and and said the following:
"His voice is all smooth and amazing and makes me want to bite a pickle." 
I don't know what that means, but I laughed and laughed and laughed.
Yeah for funny brothers!

5. I got to have texty with Talana. 
Yeah for red heads!

6. I did some Therapeutic Recreation.
Sometimes when I am at work I have to stop and pinch myself.
I cannot believe I get paid to do some of the things we do.
I am so blessed. 
Yeah for TR!

7. Yeah for pie!
Nuff said.

Sunday, July 15

What I Know

I don't talk about the Gospel too much.
Maybe because sometimes I forget what it means to me.
And all the blessings that come from it.
But today I remembered a lot of reasons why it is important to me.
As significant events happen in my life, I am reminded that the Lord is in the little moments that have led up to and prepared me for all those big moments.

1. I am grateful for the organization of the Church. 
Last week, my roommate bore her testimony about how we need organized religion.
A company wouldn't run without organization.
In the same way, the Gospel can't go forward without being organized.
I am grateful for what that gives to me.

2. I am grateful for the Priesthood.
For the sacred ordinances that it allows us to perform.
For Priesthood blessings.
For leadership and inspiration when I can't hear it on my own.

3. I am grateful for the Atonement.
For my Savior who forgives me and makes me clean again.
For a Redeemer who loves me in spite of my failings and is able to lift me up and help me be better.

4. I am grateful for a Bishop.
A Bishop Benson in particular.
Today, as he was released and another man took his place, I was able to look back across the past 3 years and see just how much he has affected me. 
I have grown in ways I never thought possible as he has taught me and guided me back to my Heavenly Father when I was lost. 
I have come to understand even better the love that my Heavenly Father has for me through this good man's love and humility and patience and guidance.
I don't know what I would have done without him these past few years.
The Lord puts certain people into our lives at certain times for a reason.
And I don't have enough fingers to count all the reasons why I know Bishop has been in my life. 
More than just a bishop, that man has been a father to me when mine was so far away. 
I can honestly say that the moments sitting and talking in his office are more valuable to me than anything else that has happened in the past 3 years. 

5. I am grateful for a living Prophet who leads and guides this Church.
What a blessings his words are to me.
They bring safety and peace in times of confusion and turmoil.
And they bring understanding and clarity to principles of righteousness.

6. I am grateful for a Heavenly Father who loves me.
I am His child. 
And He loves me enough to give me opportunities to learn everyday.
Sometimes those opportunities hurt.
But as I pray, I can see more and more how they are helping me grow.

7. I am grateful for the Book of Mormon.
I learn something new from it every day that brings me closer to my Savior.

Those are my thoughts. 
They make me strive to be a better person each day.
Because I believe.

Go here to learn more.

Friday, July 13

Puppy Times

Last night I got to puppy sit!

Troy brought this cute little thing to work and I got to take her home for the evening.
I just loved her! 

But puppies are a lot more work than I thought they would be...

The part where they get into everything,
And are not potty trained,
And like to tear stuff apart,
And eat bugs.

I was not ready for that part.

I was ready, however, to give her a bath,
to cuddle with her,
to watch her sleep,
to show her off to adoring friends and neighbors.

Most people turn into a ridiculous babytalking stranger when they see a puppy.
It's awesome.
And it makes me like some people even more.
And it makes me like others less for their general lack of caring.

Look at that face!

How can you resist?

Wednesday, July 11

Running is the worst!

Once, I ran a race.
I trained for it.
I did it.
I didn't like.
I won't be doing it again.
The only reason I look so happy here is because it is over.
And because they gave me water and a popsicle. 

But I did it. 

Fanks for pushing me, Kenzie.
You're doing the next one alone. 

Sunday, July 8

Mickey D and Magnifying Glasses

Last night I came home from work and visited with Parker.
I brought McDonalds and he provided the entertainment.
Which, in this case, was the Oxford English Dictionary.
In which the print is so tiny that one would need a magnifying glass to read it. 
Like so. 

I'm grateful for the fun times I get to spend with Parker.
For our McDonalds runs.
For our long talks.
For his not abandoning me even though he got a fantastic Lady Friend.
For his babysitting Gus Gus (aka Zimbra).
And for his endless patient with me. 
I'm super grateful for my friends.
I have some really good ones. 
Lucky, lucky me. 

Sometimes I Have Skills

I'm trying out my crafting skills. 
I made a shirt. 

I'm really proud of myself.


This Fourth was pretty fantastic.

On Tuesday night, I drove up to Layton with Parker, where he dropped me off at some of my favorite friends' houses. 
Helloooooo Chrissy and fam! 

I had a yummy dinner with Mom and Dad Pasqua, then a sleepover with little Ziggy at Chrissy's house.
It was sooooo fun to wake up in the morning and lay in bed and chat with Chrissy.
I have missed that girl so much! 
We had a pool party and barbecue at her parents house,
 then I went to Parker's for a Firework Death Fest.
Which was fantastic.

I love fireworks! 
Here we are watching some fun fireworks.
My hair is soooooo red!
(I love it.)

And his momma got some great pictures!
I'm just sad I didn't get any pictures from the morning. 

But I left the day feeling very patriotic.

Yay for America!