Capable of Fasting


The boys were so cute today in their matching sweaters, I had to pause before going in the church building to snap a picture on my phone.


Then a kind visitor passing by asked if we wanted a family picture and I said, “Sure!” I loved how it turned out–especially for a phone with a very long shutter delay.

After church, I was grateful for these pictures for an unexpected reason. Today was the first time I’ve fasted from food on Fast Sunday for six-and-a-half years, because that’s how long I’ve been pregnant or nursing (or both!). To be honest, I was a little nervous. How was I going to handle church, my calling and being patient with my sons on an empty stomach when I often had trouble on a full stomach?

But, once again, Heavenly Father taught me the beauty of faith. I fasted and I prayed for my friend’s husband who’s having health problems. And it was wonderful.

I actually felt freed from the cares of mortality, because I didn’t have to eat. I could just take time serving my children food and not worry about shoveling down my own meal in between filling sippy cups and keeping Mr. Moo’s bowl full.

And from the moment church began until it ended, it was so easy to feel the Holy Ghost. Usually I have to make a concentrated effort to be in tune, but today it was almost effortless. And that made my calling marvelous because I felt love for the sisters in Relief Society instead of stress or worry.

I also felt released from my own worries as I focused on praying for the purpose of my fast: my friend’s husband.

All of these feelings seemed to be enhanced because it had been so very long since I had fasted. Just like when I go to church or the temple after being gone from having a baby or being sick, everything is more meaningful and powerful because I’ve been away for a while.

In the end, it was empowering to truly be patient with my sons knowing I hadn’t eaten all day. And it was humbling to have yet another testament of what I’m capable of with God’s help.

Thank you, Heavenly Father. I wouldn’t, and couldn’t, have done it without You.

Paid in full

I’m not sure if y’all remember, but exactly four years ago, we purchased this house that we continue to love.

At that time in 2008, we didn’t know we were sitting at the very tippy top of the rise in housing prices.  And when it took eight months to sell our old house as housing prices steadily fell, we made a decision to stick with it.  We discussed foreclosing on the old house and walking away, but Charming counseled us to take the loss and pay it all back.  And I’m so glad we did.

Gratefully, we found a buyer for our old home and were miraculously able to take out three substantial loans to pay for our losses in selling it.

That all happened in October of 2008, which was almost three-and-a-half years ago.

And we can hardly believe it, but we’ve paid it all off!

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Just this last week, on Wednesday, February 22, 2012, (the exact four-year anniversary for purchasing this home) my husband walked into Key Bank and paid the remaining balance of our last extra mortgage.

If you had told us back in 2008 that we would be able to pay off our debts so quickly while also providing for a growing family of five, we would have had a very hard time believing it.

But we did.  And we didn’t do it alone!

I know Heavenly Father blessed us.  He blessed us to be able to do it.  And He blessed us to learn to rely on Him to be able to do it.

And by experiencing the last three-and-a-half years, we know as Nephi did “that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them”. (1 Nephi 3:7)

So, when we tried to heed His commandment to be honest and pay our debts, He prepared a way for it to happen.

Thank you, Heavenly Father.  Thank you very much!


When you think you’re going to die and you don’t– It’s very freeing.


That’s probably the longest title I’ve ever used, but it’s absolutely true.

When you really think you’re going to die and then you don’t– It’s incredibly freeing.

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My mind has been very full lately.

I feel like I’m constantly thinking of different things throughout the day as I care for the boys and our home.

Do we have enough milk in the fridge to last until Charming goes to Costco on Saturday?

Is it time for me to start making lunch?

When was the last time I changed Boots’ diaper?

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I’ve also started writing stories again and recently decided to finally write that LDS Romance Novel I’ve always wanted to write.

So that’s been filling my mind, too.

What should I name the heroine?

What does she look like?

How should I start it?

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And then the snow storms moved in this week and my mind got even more full.

One of our trees fell over and I wondered, “Did the trunk damage our new patio? Now we don’t have shade there anymore… Should we plant another tree?”

And today, I wondered, “Should I reschedule my appointment with my new doctor? Or should we go ahead and drive there in the snow?”

Because in the back of my full mind, I feel the constant weight of questions that worry me.

Will my hips ever heal?

Will my pelvis ever heal?

Will I ever be able to shop at a store again?

Will I ever be able to run with my children again?

Will I be able to have more children?

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After 10 months of pain, limited mobility and watching life from the sidelines, it’s wearing me down.

And when I recently mailed off an application for a disabled parking placard, it was very bittersweet.

But then my parents and siblings said they’d pray and fast for me and boy has that helped!

They also encouraged me to find a specialist and I did!

So, despite the snow, we still wanted to go to my appointment.  I asked Charming (a veteran snow-driver) to drive me and then confirmed with the clinic that the weather wasn’t too bad.

And with hope shining brightly in my mind, we prayed for safety, drove to the city and embarked on a new path of assessment and treatment options. (Hurray!!)

And then.

As we were driving on the freeway back to home, Charming accidentally hit a slick build-up of snow.

And we lost control.

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Our van started sliding and spinning through the middle of traffic.

And as I watched the scene unfold before me in slow motion, I thought we were going to die.

Realizing there was absolutely nothing I could do to stop it, I closed my eyes, clutched tightly to my seat belt and desperately said, “Heavenly Father, Please!”


Our back bumper slammed into the guard rail off the shoulder of the freeway and our van stopped sliding.

Stunned and breathing heavily, I opened my eyes.

I’m alive!!!

I looked over at Charming.

He’s okay!!!

We looked back at Baby– sitting in the exact corner of the van that hit the guard rail.

He’s kicking his feet and babbling!!!!

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And then I thought of Boots.

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And Brother.

Who were playing at their friend’s house.

I’m still with them!!!


And now I feel free.

Who cares if my hips never heal?

Who cares what I name my heroine?

Who cares if we run out of milk?

Who cares if I spill all my Costco cookies onto the garage floor?

I don’t.

Because Heavenly Father answers prayers.

And I’m alive!!!

And that’s all that really matters.

Writing His First Talk


Brother came home from church on Sunday with a label stuck to his suit coat informing us he’d been assigned to give a talk/testimony in Primary this coming Sunday and he is so excited!  He constantly pleads with the leaders at church for a turn to give a prayer, scripture or talk, so this is really great for him.

Yesterday, we sat down to write his talk after his reading lesson.  He definitively told me he wanted to give a testimony instead of a talk and then launched right in as I quickly recorded it.

It was awesome.

I believe in Jesus Christ and in the scriptures.  I believe in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  And I believe in President Monson and I believe in the temple.  And I’m going to marry Mommy and I like Daddy.  But I don’t like that Boots interrupts me during the prayer.  But I do like Daddy for sure.

Name of Jesus Christ, Amen.