Friday, May 9, 2014

It Was Mom

Two years ago on May 10, 2012 I wrote a blog post about my mom. With Mother's Day coming up I went back and found the post so I could reread it. As I was reading I decided I wanted to share part of it again. I shared 10 things I gotten or learned from my mom. 

1. I got her soft heart. I may seem tough on the outside but you could say something to me joking and I would leave and cry for hours over what was said and you would never know.

2. I got my tear ducts from her. We cry all the time and over really silly things. TV Shows, books, movies. We are also copycat criers. If we see someone crying we tend to start tearing up too.

3. We both hate confrontation. We are people pleasers. I hate saying no and hate standing up to people and telling them what I really feel.

4. She is really creative. I am not nearly as creative as her but luckily some of it has rubbed off on me. 

5. Thinkers. We are thinkers which can sometimes be a bad thing. We tend to over think things and over analyse

6. Kindness. I am really proud of my mom in this aspect. It is amazing to me she can be so kind to someone who has done wrong to her. I am still working on this but hope to be as forgiving and kind as her but think I do pretty well.

7. Thank goodness I got her drive. Nothing can stop the two of us when we get our heart into something. 

8. I got my moms temper. I remember when I was little when my mom would get mad and I said I would never act like that. I so do though. Because we think so much alike when we get mad, you know it. The few fights we have been in with each other were not pretty. 

9. Courage. Even though I hate confrontation she taught me to have courage to stand up for what I believe in. Courage to be anything I want. Courage to try new things. Courage to become the best me possible. Courage to step off my given road and explore what else I can do. 

10. I got something I like to call Mama Bear Syndrome from her. Typically this syndrome is a parent protecting their children. However with me and my mom we need to protect everyone we see. It is funny actually since we hate confrontation but if we see anyone hurt we quickly stand up for them. 

Love you tons and glad your my best friend.

As I was reading I wanted to pull my hair out at the bad writing and horrible grammar but I love that I still have this. I have learned so much in the past 2 years since I wrote this. I have learned my mom is super woman. As my bonus dad has been going through chemo and the bone marrow transplant she not only has she been taking care of the family but also running a very successful company. She is always doing something. Whether it is cleaning the house or at a business meeting or watching my brother play baseball or traveling all over the world, her number one priority is our family. I talk to my mom at least once day. Usually it is a lot more then just once. When she is out of the country and not just a phone call away I miss her so much.  

I wish you could all she her the way I do. When I look at her I see a beautiful woman who is my rock. She supported me when I made the decision to end my marriage. She cried with me when Koda died. She told me I was wrong when I needed to hear it. She loved me when I needed her most. She was the first person I wanted to talk to when I fell in love for the first time since my divorce. I don't know how she finds the time to do everything she needs to but she does. She balances work and our family perfectly. We are so lucky to have her. 

I also wanted to share something I wrote about 10 months ago. I was at work and had been staring at a computer screen for a few hours and was going a bit stir crazy. I wrote out a list of "Why My Mom is Better then Yours" and sent it to her. I had no idea it would end up loving it as much as she did. 

I am so lucky to have her in my life. Right now my family has just learned that the cancer my bonus dad has been fighting since August of last year is still in his system. That means more chemo and another bone marrow transplant. It is so scary to know that he is back at square one and starting the treatment process all over. The past week has been so emotional. From just him finding a lump on his neck to the doctors telling us the cancer was definitely there. 

I called my mom after we knew what was going on and we cried together. We talked about moving forward with faith and hope. I want to add one more thing to the list of things I have learned from my mom today with this in mind. There are many things my mom teaches me on a daily basis but the one I am grateful for right now is the gift of hope. Through all of this she has had hope and that hope has spread to me and my siblings. We are in a consent state of confusion and worrying about what the future holds and she is been holding our family together with this simple blessing of hope.

Thank you mom for everything you do for our family. You are so strong and I know I am so lucky to call you mom. Thank you for being my biggest cheerleader. Thank you for telling me when I am being a idiot. Thanks for putting up with the constant phone calls. Most importantly thank you for raising me to be a strong Christian. Without the knowledge and hope that comes from the Church I believe my attitude towards life and hardships would be very different. Thank you for teaching me wrong from right and then trusting me enough to let me make my own choices. It was my mom who made me who I am today. I love you more then anything you can say, think or feel. 

This is video entitled "It Was Mom" is a little tribute to all the mothers out there especially the ones in my life. 

Happy Mothers Day!


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Monday, May 5, 2014

Meet Travis

 I have been trying to decide when the time was right to share that I am dating someone. With my mom being such a public figure with her company and blog I didn't want to share any information until I was pretty confident about the relationship. After my divorce I received emails with love and support from many people who follow my moms blog and company. However I also received some messages about how I should have never gotten married so young and how I made marriage look cheap. Luckily the good out weighed the bad substantially during that time. 

Because of this though I didn't want to share anything about me seeing anyone until I knew a few things. First I needed to know that whoever I was seeing was going to be around for a while. I wouldn't talk about someone in such a public way if I didn't know that. Secondly I needed time to see how him and me would work together. I didn't want to jump the gun and tell everyone I was seeing someone and then realize we weren't compatible. Last I needed to know they could handle being in a lot of pictures! That one probably seems so silly but because of my who my mom is we are always taking photos. 

I just really needed to feel secure with someone before I went public with this information. Since my divorce has been final and I started dating again and I have been in a few relationships. However I never felt comfortable enough with any of them that I would share it with anyone besides close friends and family. That is until now. 

Meet Travis

We meet online dating. His profile picture was of him at a Utah football game in a Utah jersey. Now my family are big BYU fans so normally I wouldn't even have engaged in a conversation with a Ute Fan. However something about Travis made me want to talk to him. I loved talking to him from the start. I could tell how much his family meant to him and how hard of a worker he was. 

For our first date we went ice skating. Travis plays hockey so he is really good on the ice. I think he wanted to test me. However I passed with flying colors. I didn't fall down once! It is fun that was our first date because now when Travis has hockey games we get to go back to the same ice rink and he play his games. 

We have been dating a few months now and I adore him. It has been the easiest relationship I have ever been in. My marriage was so hard. It was always a constant battle to try and make it work. Lots of fighting and pulling of hair to just have a semi functional relationship. With Travis I don't have to worry about that. Half the time he knows what I am thinking before I do. He understand how my brain works and we work perfectly together. 

The only "argument" we have had so far was over a game of Monopoly. He totally cheated and won the game so I was quite mad at him. (He swears he didn't cheat but he had a ten year old in the palm of his hands who would trade him anything he wanted. Totally cheating.) Besides him being a cheater at Monopoly it has been so easy with Travis. 

So to help you get to know him here are a few things about Travis:

1. He is the pickiest eater I know. I love cooking and baking so this could be a issue.

2. He is a super hard worker. I really love that he this way. 

3. He has been married before which means we both understand how hard relationships can be and when problems come up we can work on them together.

4. He is 28. Almost 29 in a few weeks. 

5. He has a son. Jaxon is great! He is a little spit fire and is about as picky of a eater as his father. 

(Did I mention he is a Ute Fan?)

6. He loves movies. Doesn't watch much TV though unless it is Survivor or Sports. 

7. He plays hockey. His team is the Fainting Goats. He is also in a Bowling league. 

8. He likes to talk in strange voices. Sometimes it is a british accent. Sometimes it is like a cowboy. Luckily he doesn't do it in public. 

9. He bought the house he grew up in from his parents two years ago and is currently living there. 

10. He is just pretty great if I do say so myself. 

For Easter we went to Blanding, Utah so I could meet his family. I loved meeting his mom and dad because he talks about them all the time. I loved seeing how much his family meant to him because mine means so much to me.

I love spending so much time on the weekends with Travis and Jaxon. Even if we are just playing Mario Kart Wii, which Jaxon loves to do, we have a blast. 

I have two favorite moments with Travis. One happened just yesterday. We were out at my moms for dinner. Jaxon, my brothers and I were in the kitchen eating watermelon and I look in the front room and my mom and Travis are just sitting and having a conversation. My mom is my best friend and to see her smiling and talking to the man I love was such wonderful sight. I couldn't help but smile as the two of the most important people in my life sat there together talking. 

The other one was about a week ago. I had a really hard day. Travis and I live about 30 minutes away from each other so during the week we rarely see each other. It was a tuesday and I just needed him by my side. I called him up at work and asked if he had plans. If not I wanted to come down and see him. He actually said he was planning on coming down to see me because he knew I needed him. (Brownie Points for him!) I told him I would just come down to his place since I have roommates and he doesn't and I just wanted to be able to talk to him alone. 

After work I drove down to his place and from the moment we saw each other everything felt like it was going to be okay. We didn't end up doing anything but talking all evening. We sat on the bed with a blanket around us, holding hands and talking. He would kiss my forehead or check in the middle of a sentence and then just keep talking. We talked about a lot of emotional things and I cried a few tears. I have never felt so much love before then I did right then. I can't even describe the feeling. Thinking about it brings tears to my eyes. I just wanted that moment to never end. One thing Travis does really well is love. He loves with his whole heart and has so much to give. I truly feel so lucky to have him in my life. I am excited to see what the future holds for us. 

If you can't tell he makes me really happy. 

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Friday, April 25, 2014

Your Four Minutes

A few weeks ago was General Conference. General Conference is a semiannual gathering of members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, held every April and October at the LDS Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah.  It is broadcast world wide so all the members can watch it.  It is where we get to hear the church leaders speak to the church as a whole. I always look forward to it. This year more then most. 

This year it meant more to me then ever before. Mainly because my faith has been tested a lot. Tested so much that at one point I felt abandoned by God. I was frustrated that things weren't going the way I wanted them too. In fact for a  while a felt so angry at God for the situations I was being put in I just didn't want to go to church. I never stopped believing in the church but I was upset and didn't want to sit through three hours of church when I felt so alone. Luckily this feeling didn't last long. Looking back it truly amazes me how different my life is when I live the principles of the Gospel every day. 

When I was struggling with my testimony I was struggling with myself really. I was mad that the plans I made for myself weren't following through as planned. I wanted someone to blame and I blamed God. I wish I could express how much I regret blaming God for my trials. Instead of it making me feel better I lost a connection to my Heavenly Father and Christ because I was being stubborn. 

It is crazy to me how much this conference was aimed right at things I needed to hear. I had prayed before listening to the talks that I would feel the spirit and that I would find guidance in the words spoken by the Church leaders. I was astounded how every single talk I was able to take something away from it. Sometimes it was a single phrase that spoke to me. Other times it was as if the  whole talk had been written just for me.  

My favorite talk was entitled "Your Four Minutes" by Bishop Gary E Stevenson. He first talked shared a story about athlete Noelle Pikus who competed in the 2014 Olympics competing in the skeleton. He said "Years of preparation would be considered either a success or a disappointment based on what happened in the space of four intense 60-second runs." Her Olympic success would be based on four minutes. 

He compared our life to these four minutes. With an eternal perspective our lives here on Earth are just four minutes. This life will go by in a blink of an eye. He talked about the basic things we do that will help us reach the goal which is eternal life. Simple things we sometimes to forget to do. Praying, going to church, reading our scriptures, etc. Sometimes is the simple stuff you will struggle most with. It was just the reminder I needed to adjust my life. 

It was a beautiful talk and I would encourage you to listen to it. 
My absolute favorite thing he said was "You have the Savior of the world on your side. If you seek His help and follow His directions, how can you fail?" For someone who had tried to shut myself off from my Savior because I was mad that hit me so hard. I was failing and miserable because instead of leaning on the Savior for help when I needed it I turned away from him. 

I am so grateful to be apart of this great Church and the knowledge that comes with it. I know with every fiber of my being that the Savior lives and that the Church is true. I know He suffered for my sins and then died for me and everyone else so that we can all live again with our Heavenly Father. While the trials in my life have been so hard I am so grateful for them. They have made me strong when I felt weak. The lessons I have learned from them have made the struggles worth it. 

This world is such a scary place right now and I am grateful for the Gospel that guides me be the best me possible. I know there is a living Prophet on the Earth and we heard from him and his apostles and church leaders during General Conference. I know the words they spoke were from our Heavenly Father. I love this Gospel so much and grateful to have such amazing examples of in my life to live up to.  I am so proud of my McKay and Shane who are serving mission right now. I know they are teaching the words of Christ. 

 McKay serving in Seattle Washington.

Shane serving in Malaga Spain.

I know the Church is true and I am so grateful for loving parents who raised me and my siblings with this knowledge. If you have questions about the LDS Church and want to learn more I encourage you to contact the missionaries in your area. I know they can answer any question you have. You can contact them here. Maybe Shane or McKay will be who you talk to. You can also find answers on the church website and listen the entire General Conference. 

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Monday, March 17, 2014

Blast from the Past

If you know my family you know how much we all love photos. Not just my mom because of her work but long before that. One of my favorite things about going to my families is when we pull out one of the many boxes of photos we have a look through them. We spend hours doing it! We found some gems recently and I had to share them! 

Gentry, Me and McKay

Cousins! Me, Tyler, Gentry, McKay and Krista

Us girls and Dad. 
(I totally still have that teddy bear too!)

One of our many Disneyland trips. 

Friday, March 14, 2014

I Hope You Feel Beautiful Today

In the world today BEAUTY can mean so many things. The people we idolize are models and movie stars. We crush on the action movie stars. We follow fashion blogs and try to recreate outfits or hair styles we see in People magazine. 

My self image is something that I have always struggled with. Especially during high school I always felt like the ugly girl who you would just pass by in the hall. I remember many nights crying my self to sleep wishing that I would wake up and things would be different. I remember going on crazy diets to lose weight, coloring my hair because I thought brunettes were prettier and buying all the latest fashion trends so I could try to fit in.

My self worth was so small though some days I wouldn't even try. I would get out of bed throw my hair up in a bun and leave the house in sweats. It seemed so pointless to try and get ready when I knew it didn't matter. I felt like even if I did try it would never be good enough. I would never be as pretty as the popular girls. 

When I graduated high school and moved to Oregon I changed my opinion. Somehow living alone without my family I had to realize how much I was worth. I couldn't just lean on my family when I needed help. I grew up a lot when I was there. It was living in Oregon I learned I loved photography and that I was really good at it. I learned that to make friends you needed to be one. I made mistakes and learned a lot of lessons too. 

When I moved back to Utah I was much stronger. But I still was missing the key ingredient to BEAUTY. I met my future husband shortly after moving back home to Utah. I was instantly swept away in this boy. I couldn't believe this boy was dating me. All of the sudden what I thought of myself didn't matter. THE ONLY THING THAT MATTERED WAS WHAT HE THOUGHT OF ME. I was shocked when he told me he loved me. I couldn't fathom it when he proposed. I couldn't believe I was feeling just a week before the wedding that I was making a huge mistake and that I should call off it off. All that mattered to me though is what people would think of me if I did.

I was so embarrassed to call off the wedding. I knew my parents had spent a lot of money. There was family coming in from out of state. I didn't want to be seen as weak so I let a boy talk me into the biggest decision you ever make because I was scared people would talk bad about me. I didn't want to have to explain why I wouldn't be getting married. So I went through with the wedding and told myself I was just having cold feet. 

At first married life was so fun. I loved having someone to come home to everyday. My favourite thing ever was waking up next to someone. I thought about the future daily and how our lives would change over the next few years. I was excited to see where we ended up together. MY WHOLE LIFE REVOLVED AROUND HOW I FELT WHEN HIS ARMS WERE AROUND ME.  It didn't take long however to see that there were problems. 

At first our problems seemed small and then they grew bigger and bigger.  It got to the point where I hated myself. I HATED THE PERSON I HAD BECOME. I would hide my pain from my friends and family because I didn't want them to see how bad things were. Life seemed to be to much for me to handle. I was experiencing things I never thought I would. I felt hurt beyond belief and betrayed. And then my marriage was ending. 

As I was going through my divorce I felt BROKEN and USED. I thought no one would ever love me again since I had to carry around the baggage of my divorce now. Luckily my divorce took 6 months to finalize. During that time I was so frustrated it was taking so long but I look back now and I am grateful. I needed time to realize I could be strong on my own. I need time to pick up the pieces of myself and sew them back together. And the most beautiful thing happened. As I put myself back together I realized I was so much stronger then I thought. 

I knew I would rather be single for the rest of my life then be in a toxic relationship. I realized the only way to be free of the pain was to learn to love myself. I started to learn how it was to be alone. To not worry what others thought about me. 

realized I was a beautiful person all along but because I didn't believe it no one else did.

 Here I am at 23 and my opinion on beauty has changed dramatically. I sometimes feel I am much older then 23. Five years ago I wouldn't have pictured myself where I am right now. I am so glad I am exactly where I am though. 

I am BEAUTIFUL. I am surrounded by BEAUTIFUL people who make my life so much better. My crazy life is one BEAUTIFUL mess and  I wouldn't change one second of it. 

BEAUTY isn't about the women walking on the red carpet. It isn't about owning the newest fade or how many friends you have on Facebook. BEAUTY is about something within yourself. It is knowing you have lots of flaws and knowing those flaws make you unique and one of a kind. Once you know how much your worth no one can change your mind. 

If your struggling with knowing how amazing you are, know that I have been in your shoes. It took a long time for me to be comfortable with myself. Loving yourself takes time and can be a journey. But it is a journey worth taking. Only after you discover how BEAUTIFUL you are will others be able to see it too. 

I Hope You Feel Beautiful Today

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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

A Little Piece of Heaven

I absolutely love being a aunt! Pretty much it is one of the best things ever. I am positive the only thing that will ever compare to the love I feel for my niece and nephews will be the love I feel for my own children. 

Matt and Kayla recently welcomed home Tenneson Lewis.
February 23 he was sent straight from Heaven.

Maxson and Zellie already love him so much! 

They are the cutest family! Even though they live far away I think of all five of them daily. 

Photo Credit:

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Kick'em When Down

As I was going through some of my past writings I found a post called "Kick'em When Down". I never had finished writing it and it has been sitting waiting for me to do something with it since then. 5 months ago I sat down and wrote out my frustrations and anger. While I was writing it my mom called me and gave me some great advice. I stopped writing and instead started a completely new post.  

I ended up writing my Surrender post that day instead. It is so crazy to me to see the difference in the two. 

"Ahh Life..... Sometimes you have a way of always reminding me who is in charge and that it is definitely not me. 

         Honestly I haven't wanted to write lately. Writing for me is pouring my heart out and turning what I am feeling in words. Lately though my heart just hurts a lot. I didn't want to see my pain in black and white text. After waiting and waiting for something to happen that would be happy and cheerful here I am writing about another trial in my life. 

        Lately it seems one bad thing happens and I think how could things get worse. I then wake up the next day already exhausted from the last and something else gets added onto my pile of hardships. Yesterday was a day when I thought that it wasn't possible for anything else to go wrong. And then it did. My life is at a strange turning point. I feel like every aspect of my life is burning up in flames and I can't find anything to put it out with. 

        And you know what I am mad. I am furious that everyday something else happens that I have to deal with. I am keep asking "Why me? Why right now?". When I have bad days I always like to go to Pinterest and look at the quote section. I read the quotes that give you hope and encouragement. It always has helped me cope with challenges in my daily life. But not lately. Lately I read those words and can't help but feel worse. I am so tired and so exhausted. I need one day where everything goes "right". 

      One day I will look back at this and laugh at how things turned out. For now I am just going to be mad for a little while."

   What is so funny about this, is that I feel exactly the way I predicted I would! I don't even remember what one thing that happened that made me sit down and write that. There was multiple things going on right at the time and it could have been any one of them. 

I am not saying I haven't had bad days since then. I have. But so does everyone else around me. I just have a different view point then I did right then. I couldn't see the light at the end of the tunnel. I am definitely not at the end of the tunnel yet but I can see how bright and beautiful it is at the end now. 

I am grateful I didn't delete this. I am glad that I can look back and be proud about how far I have come since then. Life is so full of twist and turns sometimes I feel so dizzy. But right now I can see clearly and am glad I have many reasons to be happy. 

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