Monday, December 7, 2009

Is there really a Santa Claus?

Again I was very impressed by the preparation of my FHE leaders. This story brings to mind the true meaning of Christmas. It helps us understand why this time of year is so special, and what we can do to make sure it stays that way.

Eight-year-old Virginia O'Hanlon wrote a letter to the editor of New York's Sun, and the quick response was printed as an unsigned editorial Sept. 21, 1897. The work of veteran newsman Francis Pharcellus Church has since become history's most reprinted newspaper editorial, appearing in part or whole in dozens of languages in books, movies, and other editorials, and on posters and stamps.

"DEAR EDITOR: I am 8 years old.
"Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.
"Papa says, 'If you see it in THE SUN it's so.'
"Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?


VIRGINIA, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except [what] they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Yes, VIRGINIA, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no VIRGINIAS. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You may tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, VIRGINIA, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Mission Thoughts

Christmas is 3 weeks away. I am happy to see it coming, but I hope that I make it through school.
The reason for my post today came to me last night at about 2am. When I went back home to Arizona last week for Thanksgiving, I brought my missionary journal back with me. I started flipping through the pages and began to read about the people I met there.

I began to feel so very blessed to have served a mission. It was more than just leaving home for two years and walking around a 3rd world country. It was more than knocking on peoples doors and asking to come in and share a message about Jesus Christ. It was more than the contacts in the street, or learning Spanish, or sleeping in bug infested apartments.

My mission changed who I am. For two whole years I dedicated my every waking breath to the building up of the church. I grew closer to my Savior. There were alot of hard times, but those really didn't matter. What mattered was my testimony of Jesus Christ.

Ive been home for over a year now, and even though I'm still a good kid, I've lost many of the good habits I worked so hard to develop while I was an Elder. I have some regrets, but I have a renewed determination to stay on the Lords side and to be who He wants me to be.
Like everyone, I have my own struggles and problems, but I know that I can overcome them if I just do what I'm supposed to.

I'm thankful for everyone who loves me and does so very much for me. I dont need to list you off by name, If you're reading this blog, then you are one of them. Thank you for all you do for me.


Monday, November 30, 2009


Today I am blogging to tell everyone that I am doing my chemistry homework an d so people will get off my back about blogging Aka Angela and Laura. The end

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thanksgiving.. not yet

Now, I'd really like to write a blog about all the people that are special to me, and I will this week, and i would start tonight if I didn't have something funny in mind for tonight. We had a ward talent show tonight, and although I had originally planned on performing, it didn't get planed well enough so I was going to do anything. But a girl in my ward said she had a really funny poem that she wanted read and that I had the perfect voice to do it. So here it is.

The Bird

The Sun was shining brightly
And I could hardly wait
To ponder out my window
And gaze at my estate.

The wind was blowing briskly
It made the flowers sway
The garden was enchanting
on this inspiring day.

I chanced upon a birdie
with a beautiful yellow bill-
I beckoned him to come to me
and lite upon my sill.

I lured him to the window
and fed him crusts of bread.
And then I quickly shut it
and smashed his little head.

Anyways, I thought that was pretty funny. Stay tuned for my next awesome posts.

Friday, November 20, 2009

The Church, here and there

I found this talk during my Book of Mormon class this week from Elder Ballard and I really liked it.
He reads a letter from a sister missionary in Argentina as she compares the church there to the church in the states.

Small and Simple Things

To illustrate, let me read from a letter written by one of our faithful sister missionaries, serving in South America, to her brother who had just received his mission call. She wrote:

“It’s really interesting with the people from the country—they are so quiet, timid, shy, and embarrassed. You are never sure exactly how much they understand. They will live and die in this small town. They are so poor and so simple and so childlike. They may never see a General Authority, never attend general conference, never go to BYU. They’ll never be Boy Scouts, never play basketball in a huge Church gym, never drive a car to stake conference, regional basketball finals, or anywhere. Many of the things we think about when we think of the Church—and take for granted—they may never see. [Now, the point.] But they have faith, they repent, they are baptized, they receive the Holy Ghost, and they renew their baptismal covenants each week when they partake of the sacrament. They pray and read the scriptures daily. They know God lives and that Christ is our Savior. And, I believe, they are going to the celestial kingdom. I do all the things they never will, but I’m not so sure about my own salvation.

“At first glance, the Church here looks absolutely nothing like the Church in downtown Orem, Utah. I have to keep reminding myself it is the same church and we all follow the same prophet. We have a sacrament meeting in the country each week because the members there really can’t afford to come into town. And as I sit there outside on a wooden chair on the plain ground, with the sun setting and the six people in attendance, as we sing hymns, pray, and partake of the sacrament, I wonder if that isn’t closer to Christ’s church than at home. But I guess it is really the same. The things that matter, the true elements of the gospel as Christ taught in 3 Nephi 11, are the same here as they are in Orem, Utah.” [3 Ne. 11]

The Lord has graciously provided the means for conversion even in the most simple and humble of circumstances. Unfortunately, some of us look beyond the mark and depend too much on buildings, budgets, programs, and activities for conversion rather than on the small and simple things that are central to the gospel. We need not look beyond our own hearts to experience the sweet spiritual feelings promised to those who obey God. That is why a new member in the most humble conditions can experience the gospel as deeply as a lifetime member who was raised in the shadow of Church headquarters.

I experienced what that Sister was saying firsthand, it was something I thought alot about. But I really just liked what she said about finding conversion and faith the way it should be done, through small and simple means. Reflecting on this helps me to see that all of the church programs are a mean to the same end, meaning that they all try to point us heavenward and develop greater faith to God.
I love the church and I'm thankful for the influence the church has had on me, not just throughout my whole life, but especially while I was in Argentina and became wholly converted to the gospel.

Monday, November 9, 2009

The Race

My roomate shared this poem with my FHE family last week and I really liked it. I'd like to share it.

The Race

by D. H. Groberg

Whenever I start to hang my head in front of failure’s face,
my downward fall is broken by the memory of a race.
A children’s race, young boys, young men; how I remember well,
excitement sure, but also fear, it wasn’t hard to tell.

They all lined up so full of hope, each thought to win that race
or tie for first, or if not that, at least take second place.
Their parents watched from off the side, each cheering for their son,
and each boy hoped to show his folks that he would be the one.

The whistle blew and off they flew, like chariots of fire,
to win, to be the hero there, was each young boy’s desire.
One boy in particular, whose dad was in the crowd,
was running in the lead and thought “My dad will be so proud.”

But as he speeded down the field and crossed a shallow dip,
the little boy who thought he’d win, lost his step and slipped.
Trying hard to catch himself, his arms flew everyplace,
and midst the laughter of the crowd he fell flat on his face.

As he fell, his hope fell too; he couldn’t win it now.
Humiliated, he just wished to disappear somehow.
But as he fell his dad stood up and showed his anxious face,
which to the boy so clearly said, “Get up and win that race!”

He quickly rose, no damage done, behind a bit that’s all,
and ran with all his mind and might to make up for his fall.
So anxious to restore himself, to catch up and to win,
his mind went faster than his legs. He slipped and fell again.

He wished that he had quit before with only one disgrace.
“I’m hopeless as a runner now, I shouldn’t try to race.”
But through the laughing crowd he searched and found his father’s face
with a steady look that said again, “Get up and win that race!”

So he jumped up to try again, ten yards behind the last.
“If I’m to gain those yards,” he thought, “I’ve got to run real fast!”
Exceeding everything he had, he regained eight, then ten...
but trying hard to catch the lead, he slipped and fell again.

Defeat! He lay there silently. A tear dropped from his eye.
“There’s no sense running anymore! Three strikes I’m out! Why try?
I’ve lost, so what’s the use?” he thought. “I’ll live with my disgrace.”
But then he thought about his dad, who soon he’d have to face.

“Get up,” an echo sounded low, “you haven’t lost at all,
for all you have to do to win is rise each time you fall.
Get up!” the echo urged him on, “Get up and take your place!
You were not meant for failure here! Get up and win that race!”

So, up he rose to run once more, refusing to forfeit,
and he resolved that win or lose, at least he wouldn’t quit.
So far behind the others now, the most he’d ever been,
still he gave it all he had and ran like he could win.

Three times he’d fallen stumbling, three times he rose again.
Too far behind to hope to win, he still ran to the end.
They cheered another boy who crossed the line and won first place,
head high and proud and happy -- no falling, no disgrace.

But, when the fallen youngster crossed the line, in last place,
the crowd gave him a greater cheer for finishing the race.
And even though he came in last with head bowed low, unproud,
you would have thought he’d won the race, to listen to the crowd.

And to his dad he sadly said, “I didn’t do so well.”
“To me, you won,” his father said. “You rose each time you fell.”
And now when things seem dark and bleak and difficult to face,
the memory of that little boy helps me in my own race.

For all of life is like that race, with ups and downs and all.
And all you have to do to win is rise each time you fall.
And when depression and despair shout loudly in my face,
another voice within me says, “Get up and win that race!”

I really liked this. Life gets hard sometimes, and if we just keep getting back up, We'll finish the race.

Sunday, November 1, 2009


November is upon us all. Time is flying by and all I can do is chase the plane.
Anyways, Life is good i think. Another deluge of midterms are over, but I'm only in the calm before another storm. I've had alot on my mind lately. School, work, relationships, among other things. I'm getting through it all, but I do feel overwhelmed sometimes. I'm really thankful for my parents. They are not only the best people in the world, but they are so loving and helpful. Without them, I'd be so lost. I'm also really thankful for my sisters, they mean alot to me.

Megann posted something really special on her blog that I think is applicable to everyone. I love my brother Ben very much. This entry is really all about him. It goes like this:

Welcome to Holland
by Emily Perl Kingsley

I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability - to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this......

When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.
After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go.
Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland.""Holland?!?" you say. "What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy."

But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.
The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place.

So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around.... and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills....and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy... and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned."

And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away... because the loss of that dream is a very, very significant loss.

But... if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things ... about Holland.

Now I know I don't have children, although someday I will, this story really touched me. I'm so thankful for what I do have, and I thank God for the experiences I have which shape who I am. My only hope as I struggle through school, relationships, fears and difficulties, My LIFE, is that I can enjoy the journey and find joy in Holland. Because I can be happy there.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

September 15

Hi everyone. Well I'm back in school and I've been busy. The first week of school was a little bumpy. I dropped and added several classes. But I finally got it all worked out. I'm taking chemistry, more math, Book of Mormon second semester, History 201, which is world history from the dawn of time to 1500AD, and another computer class. I always have a lot of homework, but I get through it.

On other fronts, I'm still single. That used to not bother me as much, but is sorta does now. Now, more than before, it weights on my mind, and occupies more of my thoughts. I'm not worried though, I'm convinced that when the opportunity presents itself that I'll be ready to peruse it correctly and act accordingly, something which I wouldn't have been able to say or do a few months ago.

Even though school is back, I've kept myself entertained with various activities, namely my trip to mount Timpanogos. It is the second tallest mountain in Utah, over 11,700 feet. Me, along with several of my close friends set off Friday night. We began hiking at about 1am, arriving at the summit about an hour before sunrise at 6am. Although we were beyond tired, we witnessed one of the most beautiful sites I've ever seen. As the sun rose and light covered us, it felt like I was seeing God himself, through His artwork and craftsmanship. It was not only an awe inspiring moment, but also a spiritually tender moment. I'm glad I was able to do it.

Other than that, I've enjoyed the continued companionship of my group of friends and am grateful for them and their good influence in my life. Thanks.

-Until next time,

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The last week of summer

Well its Tuesday, 6 days before Fall semester starts. Although I'm looking forward to school, I don't really wanna go back. School is hard, and I don't do it very well, but I'll get through it. So to celebrate the last days of summer, I went with Pete, my roommate, to his hometown of La Grande Oregon for the week. It was a blast. I had a great time. His parents treated me like their child and were super nice. We spent 3 days on lake Wallowa, a beautiful glacial lake up in the mountains. We enjoyed great food, 3 days on the boat, wake boarding, tubing, and hiking. It was the best. Anyways, heres the pics

I'm hanging out of the gandola

This freaking squirrel was eating out of my hand

Heres me in the tube

Atop a mountain

Looking awesome

School starts in 6 days =(
See ya

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Last day of summer school

Well its now the end of summer term. Its been a great summer, and school was ok.
I'm happy my classes are over, and I'm looking forward to the semester as well as life in general. The future looks bright and I'm excited for the changes that will happen over the next couple weeks. Anyways, I'll be brief on what I write. Here like always are some good pictures.

I went to Idaho with Meridith for libby's second birthday. Here we are about to leave

I love this pic, I love my nieces.

I love this pic, It looks like I'm jumping super high over this sign.

Me next to some river or something

This is a pic of Ben. I went to St. Johns a few weeks ago, and met with the whole family.

This is late comer picture from my zions trip. I had just rolled in the mud....

Thursday, July 23, 2009

New website Page

Ok So i've owned the website for many years. I've spent a decent amount of money on it. I've always wanted to keep it because when I become famous and super rich, I dont want to have to buy the domain back from someone who got it before me. Anyways, I have some nice stuff on it that no one really knows about. I was thinking about how to make my site a little more interesting, when I arrived at a cool idea. I'm gonna make a series of pages about my friends, and important people to me. Sorta like a blog, but more like general info. Anyways, its a work in progress, but I thought I'd just give some heads up as I create it.

It'll be at

I'll keep everyone updated as I complete my little project.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

July Summary

So today is the 21st of July. Its been 40 years and 1 day since the first man landed on the moon. Thats cool. Life is good here in provo. And the summer beginning to end. I've had lots of good times this last month. And I think some pictures will illustrate my point.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Monda, June 22 2009

Well today is the first day of summer term! oh boy. It shouldn't be too bad. I'm taking 2 classes, which are American Heritage and The new testament. I have class on Mondays, wensdays and thursdays, for a total of 10 hours per week. So thats not bad at all. I'm almost ready to go, but I thought I'd update my blog first.

This week was good. A few noteworthy events:
monday was FHE. We wrote thanks letters to the troops seriving and protecting the US, and then watched Bedtime stories.
Tuesday, we had some girls over from the other apartment and made them dinner. My roomates have been doing this for a while, but this was the first time I was there. Afterwards we played serveral games and then had a karaoke night. It was a blast.

Wensday and Thursday we had a Lord of the Rings marathon. We've finsihed 2 of the 3 for now.

Friday, I drove down to Manti with several friends to see the Manti Padget. It was the second time I've been, but it has been years. I really enjoyed and my friend Kevin came along too. I'll post pictures later once I get them.

Saturday was uneventful. It rained most of the day. I worked several times, ate an entire pizza, procrastinated witting my talk, and went to bed at 10:30 pm. :)

And sunday, I got up early, ate some yummy cinnamon rolls, and prepared my sacrament talk about The sacrament. I think I did ok. Several of my friends and other people told me they enjoyed my talk and my testimony. I called one of my converts in Argentina because it was her birthday and I talked to my father for Father's day.

Life is good. I am happy. Excited for school, and ready for the rest of summer!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Summer 2009

Well once again I've neglected my Blog duties. I'll try to update it more regularly. Today is Sunday, June 14, 2009. I'm still living in Provo Utah right now and enjoying the summer. I'll try to find some pictures that show the last 5 months of my life.
I came up to Provo in January to go to school. I dont have many pictures of that time because well, i was going to school and things were hectic.

Megann and her kids came to visit too.

Those pictures were taking durring the semester. Those are my roomates and my good friend Pete. After the semester was over, I went home for a couple weeks to visit my family.

When I got back to Provo, I got a haircut

And then the fun began.

My good friend from back home, Kevin, came to live here. The summer isnt half over yet, and I still have things to do. So hopefully I'll update soon. Love you.