Sunday, October 23, 2011


For whatever reason, I've been thinking about when Peter went to walk on the water toward Christ and started sink. That led me to compare myself to Peter. Interestingly (and majorly weird), last night in the adult session of stake conference, the stake president invited to compare ourselves with Peter (like I said, weird).
None of us are perfect. We make mistake…after mistake…after mistake…you get the picture. We have a choice whether to sink or swim. Our Heavenly Father and Savior have made sure there is a choice.

Toe in the water testing the temp.
Moving further in to gauge the depth
Advancing further out flowing with the tide
Floating deeper in letting the water take me for a ride
Ripples start to rock me very slow
Wind picks up; waves kick in and toss me to and fro
Look up and around to see which way is shore
Surrounded by deep water, there is no land anymore
Waves swallow me pushing me deeper in
All the strength within me still can’t help me swim
Darkness now; completely overtaken no more chance for me
Despair, now numbness; black as the eye can see
Someone reaching down stretching out a hand
Feels so far away, hopeless; hurts more than I can stand
The hand reaches out again begging me to take
Eyes want to close; why reach out and try at all when I may just break?
Pulling inside myself; the safest place to be
If I’m to be saved someone will have to come all the way to me
The presence looms above my head and patiently reaches out
The answer is within me; I just don’t know what it is about
What if I reach to grab the hand that is stretched out to me
Only to be dropped further in the darkness of this sea?
Soft as a whisper, the voice is there, “Come. I will not let thee fall.”
Fighting against the depths, I stretch, I reach, I crawl
At last fingers intertwined I begin my ascension from the waters dim
I am too heavy, I am too numb, I have no strength to swim
Slow and painful is the pace, the temptation to let go is strong
When at last I break the surface I hear, “I’ve been here all along.”
“Before you called for me, I was here. You are always in my heart.”
So many questions flying around I don’t know where to start.
“If you were there how could you let me fall into the very deep?”
Pain flashes across my heart; my eyes begin to weep.
There is love behind the eyes looking at me; sincerity in the voice:
“I cannot take what is yours to make. You must make the choice.”
To choose to step, to float, to sink was always mine to make.
Just as the hand reaching out to me was always mine to take.
So it is up to me to decide whether to sink or swim.
Will I reach up and take the hand or fall to the depths within?

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Arizona Trip

At the end of April, we did the unthinkable…packed up our van (four kids in tow) and drove 30 hours to Arizona. The kids did phenomenal! I think Jake & I complained the most. We were able to spend Easter weekend at my dad's with the how fam damily. The only ones missing were Geoffrey (on his mission), Jessica (she got married and is too cool for us now…), and Melanie who was out of state visiting her family.

We had so much fun and never had a moment to breathe between Easter egg hunts, tractor rides, temple sessions, the zoo, and good ol' visiting (sorry for those of you we missed :(….). Porter only got car sick twice and once we convinced him the dramamine would keep him from spewing, it was all good. That, and he got to sit shotgun the rest of the time. It all went so well, we're actually crazy enough that we've started planning our trip next year!

Here are some pics of our adventures:

The boys just after their tractor ride! (Thanks to Warner and Rose Marie Mattice)

I snuck this one of Papa Max and Porterman

Another sneaky pic at the Mesa Temple Visitor Center. 
The best ones happen when they don't know you're taking them :)

The whole (almost) fam damily ;)

Whenever we get together, I still feel I'm 9 years old (in a good way)

Feeding the ducks at the fairgrounds. We HAVE to do this every time we make a trip to AZ

Kiddos at the Zoo. I promise they were having a blast despite what their expressions may say.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Ode to my siblings :)

Since I last posted in October (Yes, I know Jeana...but I've been busy!), A LOT has happened. Between school, birthdays, and holidays there has not been too much time to breath. I just had the awesome opportunity to go to AZ for my niece's wedding. It was awesome or "Amazing" (as Jen would say).  I gave me a reminder of how grateful I am for the family I was born into and the one born to me. My siblings and I share our own world - here's some thoughts for you guys....

I absolutely love my siblings. We can go months…even years without seeing each other and pick up where we left off. The mixture of our presences ignites an energy that is not around when we are left to ourselves.

At Jessica’s wedding, we one by one gathered into the chapel awaiting the time to be sent into the sealing room. As each one of us filtered in, I could feel the excitement we hold for each other. We got a bit rambunctious in our greetings to each other and were “shushed” more than once. I wonder if we would have been the first ones to get kicked out of the temple for being too loud.

I giggled about our unintended irreverence for a while and then started to view it in a different light. It is not that we were being irreverent but the excitement and love that we hold for each other and our family cannot be contained. When we attempt to bottle such energy it is left bursting at the seams. We have been through a lot together; more than most and I think that causes such energy to be intensified. That is not to say that other siblings do not have a loving connection. We are connected at the heart. We have been broken at the same time and all the splinters and pieces were put back together only when we jumbled them all together and then split them amongst ourselves.  I feel like Heavenly Father had to be giggling along with us. How can you squelch the sharing of love?

I do not regret or resent the pains of the past. They are what created the bond we have. We are left with memories of such pains, but they are for our benefit. Our scars make us tougher – more durable, and yet have allowed a greater increase of love.  Sitting in the sealing room, I was able to see all of you and could not help feeling immense gratitude. It was Jessica’s day, but I am glad I had the opportunity to be reminded of just how lucky I am. When all else is said and done or if I should be stripped of all I posses, I take great solace in the knowledge that I will never be empty handed nor empty “hearted”. I have you guys…whether you like it or not. :)