3 Years Old

My niece, Claire, is a riot. Here are some of the funny things she said over the break:

  • “What are those boys doing?” (Referring to my dad and brother looking at slides)
  • “I put my panties on my head! It was like a Panty Hat!” (She woke T.J. and I up with that important news)
  • “I don’t want to ride down this mountain!” (Referring to sledding down our driveway which is not very steep at all)
  • “Hi, ‘Hide and Seek’ Sam!” (Sam always plays Hide and Seek with her…)
  • “I want a lay down diaper with bottom cream!” (She sees the new baby get a diaper with cream so now when she tears her pull-ups apart and wants to be like the baby)
  • “That’s gorgeous!” (Referring to a toy at the dollar store)
  • “Hold on to that tight because that is very fragile!” (Referring to her new little plastic piggy bank)
  • “I want to play with that girl!” (Pointing at me)
  • “PAUSE THE TV! PAUSE IT! PAUSE IT!” (She had to upstairs for a minute and just kept shouting this)
  • “I’m a crackernut!” (She calls nutcrackers, “crackernuts”)
  • “I want to watch the movie where the boy steps on his glasses and cries!” (Referring to the Christmas Story)
  • “My name is Megan.” (Her reply when someone asked her for her name.)
  • “I hate wolves, bears, beasts, and rats!” (She went on to tell my why. All of them are from stories that scare her to death)
  • YOU’RE ON FIRE, YOU’RE BURNING TO DEATH!” (We were playing “hot and cold.” I wasn’t anywhere near where she hid her toy.)
  • She starts most of her sentences saying, “Maybe… Maybe….. Maybe…” while shaking her index finger like she’s thinking.

Clairabell and Amelia Bedelia

Claire playing “Church”

I love the two different faces Claire and Amelia are making.

Meine Mutter

I just got off the phone with my mom. There’s no one quite like a mom, I’ve decided. They just make things better and your life happier.

I can’t believe she was out here more than six months ago in April to help me with the wedding! Here are a few pictures from her trip.



Everlasting Mirrors

Yesterday, I couldn’t work on my projects any longer and so I quit everything and went to the temple with T.J.

We decided to do sealings. There was just a small group of us in the sealing room. The sealer was so talkative, it was pretty entertaining. All of the names were names he had done and so with each couple, he would tell us their story, which was really interesting. As I waited while other couples performed the work, I stared across the room into the everlasting mirrors, which are symbolic of us being linked  to all of those who have come before us and all of those who come after us.

With each sequential mirror, I went back through my family in my head. Me. My mom. Penny, my Grandmother. My Great-Grandmother… What was her name, again? Was it Pearl? Was it Bessy? Was it Moo?” I couldn’t believe it. There were thousands of mirrors in that reflection. And when I related them to my family tree, I could only go back to my grandmother by name?

Lately at church, the theme has been genealogy and temple work. Last week our Bishop asked us, “What if you went to the temple and there were no names for you to perform the work for?” He went on to tell us that they are starting to run out of names for the women, and that we must start finding our own names.

From my Bishop’s question and my experience at the temple last night, I’ve decided it really is time to start working on my family history. It is embarrassing that I cannot even give the name of my great-grandparents.

There is a lot of work to be done. And if your families work is finished, then help me with my family’s. I like the commercial for ancestry.com that say, “You don’t have to know what you’re looking for, you just have to start looking.”

The blessings that come from the temple are incredible. Not only for those whom the work is being performed for, but also for us and our families. It allows us to be with our families forever and it brings peace into lives, a peace you cannot find anywhere else. For those few hours in the sealing and celestial rooms, I was able to leave everything outside the temple and put my life in an eternal perspective. Christ needs to be the center of our lives. When when we put him first and have faith, everything will fall into place and our families will be eternally blessed.

If you would like to learn more about temple work, visit Mormon.org and watch this video.



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Hello, Cincinnati!

Last weekend T.J. and I were going to buy our tickets to Cincinnati for Christmas break. T.J. has to leave before New Years so he can get back to work and we decided I would stay until the 3rd of January since I don’t get to go home very often. Well, T.J.’s ticket was rounding out to be about $500. That is ridiculous. No student has that type of money to spend. That’s like 2 car payments, or ten phone payments, or 3 months of groceries. Way too much.

We didn’t want to have to buy the ticket right then but we also knew it was quite a risk not to buy T.J.’s ticket because the price could keep increasing or we might not be able to be on the same flights for Christmas (which isn’t a huge deal, but it would be nice). So anyway, we felt really strongly that we should just wait to buy his ticket and pray that by our next paycheck we could afford to buy his ticket and that the price wouldn’t increase too much.

One day later after buying my ticket, we got a message from T.J.’s parents saying that they would like to get T.J.’s ticket with his dad’s sky miles (he racks up a lot each week because of his work). I was amazed. First of all, I am so grateful for in-laws who are willing to do that for us, especially when the tickets mean we won’t be spending the holidays with them. Also, we didn’t have to stress out about the situation at all because our answer to our prayers came SO fast. And three, what a blessing it is that we listened to the prompting to wait to buy T.J.’s ticket.

T.J.’s dad got the ticket for us last night, completely free.


Thanks so much, Kelly and Mark! You have no idea how grateful we are for you all!


Happy Birthday, Mom!

Mom, I have been thinking about you all day (and the gift that I sent you that I have been so excited about)! I hope it was a great day!

We have had so many memories together. When I was a little girl, you would take me to the pond so we could feed the ducks. When I grew up, I still took the walks, but not as many as I should have. We went shopping together on the week nights and I thought it was the coolest thing ever since it was a “school night.” We laughed together watching the Cosby show, Monk, and the Office. You drove up our hill one morning when you were really tired after seminary, it was the funniest thing you’ve ever done. You sent me to all of those summer camps at the armory I didn’t want to go to, but now I get that you just needed me out of the house. You took me dress shopping for all of my dances and bore with me when it would always come to tears seeing that none of the stores had any modest dresses. You took care of me in the nights when I was sick, gave me popsicles and let me have some 7-up (I always asked for Sprite, but for some reason, you always would get 7-up). You would make me practice piano and let me practice to get out of washing the dishes. You told me and my friends that you would bottle up our laughter and treasure it forever. It was weird, but makes me cry thinking about it now. You took me to Disneyland and to many other vacations every year. You let me believe that Santa was real until fifth grade, and although you ran out screaming, “We could have had her another year!” when Mary Beth told me the truth, I know you just wanted me to always have the Spirit of Christmas. You hid our Easter baskets, stuffed adorable stockings, made the best peanut butter balls. You taught me the gospel, knelt me down to pray every night as a little kid, and taught me what it means to be a Christian. You taught me manners, told me how to set a table, and showed me that we don’t wear white after labor day. You taught me how to clean, how to love, how to be a friend, and how to be a wife. You were there for me when no one else was. You helped me get through high school and Young Women’s. We prayed together nightly for a new young woman to join the church so I wouldn’t be alone. We prayed together when the snow was falling to hard to drive to Penny’s after church. We prayed together for all of our siblings when they left the house.

Mom, you’re truly the best.

You asked all of us to share our memories with you, and clearly I got a little sentimental. But I wanted to let you know how much I care for you!

Happy Birthday, from the baby!


We’re from Kentucky.

It was really windy.

When I was 14 or 15, my parents and I went to San Francisco for the 4th of July. It was one incredible trip that I still talk about. But mostly I still talk about it because of this one experience:

My parents and I loved walking down all the streets looking at the amazing houses and just wished we could go inside one.

There was this one house that was being remodeled and the door was wide open. A construction worker was outside and my parents decided to ask him if we could go in the house.

He said, “Si.”

My parents are nuts and decided to go inside.

I pleaded with them, begging them not to go, but it was too late they were already in the doors. I walked in the foyer but that was all. My mom walked into the rooms in the main floor and my dad headed on upstairs for the grand tour.

But something started to hit my mom and I.

The house was still furnished. Paintings on the wall. Pictures on the table, jackets on the coat hanger.

This house, folks, was not vacant. And we soon found that out.

“Hi, can I help you?” said a woman who came in from another room.

My mom, thinking she was a real estate agent, said, “Oh, we’re just looking around, checking out this nice house.”

“This is a private residence!”

My dad with impeccable timing called from upstairs, “Nancy, there’s more up here!”

I was in utter horror. Shock. I couldn’t believe that this was really happening. We had walked into some lady’s house just because the man outside who clearly didn’t know English told us, “si.”

I grabbed my mom, she started apologizing over and over, called for my dad, we ran out of the house while my mom gave her last apology:

Oh, I’m sorry, we’re from Kentucky.

That explained it.