Friday, August 15, 2014

Once Upon a Reunion

From the 1st to the 4th of August, we had a family reunion with my dad's side of the family.

The theme was Once Upon a Time, and we had a lot of really fun activities.

We had the reunion at Bear Lake, and aside from the fact that the owners sat on their garage porch and watched us the whole time, we had a great time!

The first night, we just ate dinner and talked to people. Kevin had a great time playing on the playground with his cousins. They also had swords made out of water noodles and PVC pipes. Kevin really enjoyed those the whole reunion. We also went and got one of their famous raspberry shakes. They were pretty good, but I'm not a big fan of the seeds.

Saturday, we went to Bear Lake and swam. My siblings had pooled their funds together to rent a jet ski, so we took turns riding it onto the lake. It was a little bit scary (the waves were super choppy) and it was my first time driving one, so it took a little while to get used to. One of the strangest things was when I released the gas, the jet ski instantly dropped down to a stop. That took some getting used to.

Kevin swam with us for a while, but then he got cold, so he just wanted to play on the beach. There were these shallow pools of water on the beach, and Kevin loved to lay in them belly-down and splash in the water. He was super cute. The water was much warmer in the pools as well. We stopped to eat lunch while we played, and Kevin didn't want to get out of the water to eat. A couple of times, he would have a cheetoh in his hands, and he would slide into the water, soaking his cheetoh in the filthy, seagull poop water, and then eat it. That was pretty gross.

At least our kid has a great immune system.

We also spent some time working on a sand castle. It turned out pretty good!

After we finished swimming we headed home. We all got a little sunburned, but we had applied a lot of sunscreen, so it wasn't too bad. That night we jousted. We stood on shaky stumps and tried to push each other off of them with extra long water noodles. That was really fun. I won some, and lost some.

The next day we went to church and then came back and had a family meeting where we talked about family history and played a game of cousin jeopardy. It was pretty fun. Then our grandma talked to us about the importance of staying united as a family and staying faithful to the Lord.

We spent the rest of the day working on stop-motion videos, writing letters to missionaries, talking, and playing games. Grig really enjoyed capture-the-flag that they played after dark. I had eaten too much dinner, and had no desire to run. I talked to my siblings and cousins instead.

As part of the festivities, we had been asked to write the story of how we met in fairy-tale form. I'll have to post our story, because we were quite proud of how our story turned out.

The next day we cleaned up and then drove home.

It was a fantastic reunion.

(I'm going to post this now, and add more pictures later when I have more time. I've got to go to work now.) 

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Taking Comfort from a Fortune Cookie

Last Saturday night, Grig and I went on a one last date before he went back to his job.

We went to a Chinese place.

I ordered a dinner platter of orange chicken. The waitress pointed out the lunch menu that had less chicken. I said I preferred the dinner menu, and she told me that she hoped I was hungry.

When they brought my food, I thought, "At least I'll have left-overs." There was A LOT of chicken.

Though we were having a good time, the impending separation was hanging over our heads. I was feeling pretty sad about it, even though I knew it was only going to be around four days. It still seemed like it was going to be a long time.

As we finished up our meal, we were given fortune cookies. I kind of hesitated, and then I said, "Well, let's find out our fortunes."

Grig opened his first. His said something like: You are an adventurer. You will be traveling down a different road.

"How appropriate," I said. Then I opened mine. It said: You are on the right pathway.

I found that hugely comforting. I don't believe that fortune cookies tell the future, but I do believe that the Lord can speak through all mediums, and I felt like that was His way of telling me that everything was going to be okay.

It has been. I miss my husband, but we've been busy, and that's made the separation easier.

I'm sure excited to see him on Friday though.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


Over the past week, I have re-entered the work force. I'm working on apartments during the break between semesters.

It has been a change. The physical nature of the work was exhausting at first, but I am getting better at it again.

Kevin has been having a hard time. He's been staying with my mom while I work, and he does really well all day, but the moment when I leave in the morning is difficult.

Last week, Grig's job didn't have enough work for their employees, so Grig came up and helped. Sunday night, he drove back to Utah. That was difficult. We miss him a lot. Last night, we skyped, and Kevin cackled with delight the whole time. He kept kissing his daddy's face on the screen as well.

I enjoy working though. I enjoy seeing improvement, and manual labor makes me feel like I've actually accomplished something. It also allows me time to think, especially when I am doing meticulous tasks by myself.

I've been working on these family-owned apartments since I was 11 (with a few short breaks here or there). That's a long time. However, I am grateful for the work-ethic it has given me. I have to go now, but I know that a lot of the good qualities I have came from working with my family.

I want to give my child(ren) the same experience. 

Monday, August 11, 2014

Mormon Monday: The Importance of Marriage

I'm sorry I haven't blogged in a week. I hope to be back on track again. Working makes it difficult to blog.

Yesterday, something was said at church that reminded me of a special experience I had just before I got married.

A few weeks before I got married, I remember distinctly one night when I was driving home. We'd already paid for our cruise, and the invitations had already been sent. However, as was pausing at a stoplight, I had the very distinct impression that I needed to pray and ask Heavenly Father if I really should marry my fiance.

As the impression struck me, I felt fear rise up within me. I felt like I had received my answer previously, and I didn't know why Heavenly Father would want me to ask again.

What if the answer was no? I immediately imagined the embarrassment of trying to tell everyone the wedding was off. We'd also lose all of the money that we put into the cruise. Not to mention, I rather liked Grig and didn't want to tell him that we weren't supposed to be together.

However, as all these thoughts swept through my mind, I decided that if my Heavenly Father told me I  shouldn't marry Grig, I wouldn't. I knew that my Father knew better than I did what the future held, and I needed to put him first.

So I prayed. I asked my Heavenly Father if I was supposed to marry Grig. As soon as I did, I was flooded with warmth and assurance. I knew that I was making the right decision, and I was so grateful I asked.

I have often thought since then, why did I feel the need to ask if the answer was yes?

I realized that I had to be willing to put Heavenly Father first. Even though I love my husband dearly, if the Lord said no, I was going to be willing to put His will first. That lesson has served us well throughout our marriage.

Many marriages are failing because people are selfish. If their spouse stops fulfilling their needs, they break it off.

Marriage isn't supposed to be about having someone else fulfill your needs though, it supposed to be about loving and serving each other. If your every focus is to serve your spouse, and they reciprocate that same feeling, your needs will be met as you meet the needs of your best friend. As we work toward becoming more like our Heavenly Father, we become more service-oriented. We begin to love people with a more Christ-like love.

One of my favorite quotes goes:
God loves you just the way you are. However, he loves you too much to let you stay that way.
I don't know who said this originally, but I believe it's true. If we love those around us with a Christ-like love, we want them to improve because we know righteous living will make THEM happier. In a marriage, we should always be striving to improve ourselves and help our spouses with their goals. We don't make their goals for them, but as they set goals, we should ask them how we can help them attain them.

Marriage is often seen as a contrivance. However, we as members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe that marriages (performed under the authority of the Lord) can last forever. Helaman 10:7 says:
Behold, I give unto you power, that whatsoever ye shall seal on earth shall be sealed in heaven; and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven; and thus shall ye have power among this people.
We believe that marriage is eternal and that families are central to our Heavenly Father's plan. If the marriage is supposed to last forever, 40 or 50 years should be a beautiful beginning.

I know that this is true. I know that marriage is important to our Heavenly Father. I know that as we put our Heavenly Father first, our marriage will grow stronger as we grow closer to Him. Marriages CAN succeed. I have seen it, and I for me, divorce is not an option. I'm going to be with my husband forever. Though at times, we may be separated, we will not be divided. That is my promise to my husband and myself, and he has promised the same thing.

We can work through things and we will, with our Heavenly Father's help.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Family Friday: A Misconception of Samuel Roskelley

As I have mentioned before, my grandpa has been working on his life-history. Just today, he and my grandmother have found an answer to a misconception that has been bothering people for a long time. I asked them if I could share what they discovered on my blog, and they told me that I could.

For a long time there has been a misunderstanding about one of my great-great-great grandparents. Samuel Roskelley was a very prominent member of Cache Valley back when it was first settled. As many early LDS pioneers did, he had plural marriages. His second wife, my great-great-great grandmother's name was Mary Roberts Roskelley.

For many years, people have had a misunderstanding of the way that Samuel treated my grandmother. In his personal history, he told of how Mary lived in a dirt roof log cabin that leaked every time in rained. He then stated that she lived there for thirty-nine years.

People have taken this to mean that Mary lived all those years in the three-bedroom, dirt-roofed log house that leaked every-time it rained for thirty-nine years, before he finally build her a nice five-room frame home. My grandparents have told me that a lot of people criticized Samuel Roskelley for not providing better for his wife. His other wives had very nice homes, and they couldn't understand why Samuel didn't prevent Mary from living in such despicable conditions.

However, as my grandpa was comparing dates for his history, he found something very exciting. He found that the frame home was actually began only eleven years after Mary moved to the farm. It took him five years to complete it, so it was completed on the sixteenth year. She lived on the farm for 38 (again, my grandpa recalculated using the dates that were given) years, and for 22 of those years she lived very comfortably in a nice home.

Samuel Roskelley was a very busy man with many responsibilities, both within the church and with his own personal work. From what my grandparents were saying, it sounds like he did his very best to care for all of his wives and children. As he built the house, he also caused some fresh water springs to be pumped to the house so she no longer had to fetch and carry water to the house.
This is a picture of my great-great-great grandmother
Mary Roskelley was a very impressive woman who worked hard her whole life and raised wonderful children. I am grateful to have such amazing ancestors. Hopefully this help clear up the misconceptions about Samuel Roskelley. He spent a lot of time and energy helping to make my grandmother comfortable and happy.