November 13, 2008


This past Sunday I was able to go see my niece and nephew in a cute little primary program. It was amazing. It is crazy to me how moving the sounds of those little voices can be and the simplicity of their message. My brother and sister-in-law were also part of the program. Their family stood together and sang "Families can be Together Forever". David had his own little solo and sang out it a clear child like tone. It was so moving. My sister-in-law then following relief society took a moment to tell David how proud she was of him and how great he did. Amazing. That is really what it is all about. I'm so lucky to have the family I do. I love you all.

October 30, 2008

A list of 8's

Made this forever ago and never published it. Ta da.

8 TV Shows I Watch:

1. The Office
2. House
4. Arrested Development
5. Americas Next Top Model
6. The Colbert Report
7. Without a Trace
8. Law and Order (anyone)

8 Favorite Restaurants:
1. Happy Sumo
2. La Dulce Vitas
3. P.F. Chang's
4. Kneeders
5. The Garden
6. Crown Burger
7. The Cheese Cake Factory
8. Goodwood

8 Things that happened yesterday:
1. Went to the Missy Higgins Concert
2. Wrote one of the worst papers I've ever done.
3. Missed my class
4. Breathed in way too much smoke at the concert
5. Went to Village Inn for only the second time
6. Fell asleep before reading my scriptures, I hate that :(
7. Waited in a long line
8. Showered

8 Things I look forward to:
1. Getting married
2. Having my own family
3. Watching House MD!
4. Graduating
5. Christmas
6. Playing with my nieces and nephews
7. Being with my family; they are the greatest!
8. Going on a mission

8 Things on my wish list:
1. Live a good full life
2. Raise my children in righteousness
3. Going to Greece
4. Visit Lake Louise
5. For all my family to be incredibly happy (like Emma said)
6. Collect lots of children's books
7. Always be true to myself
8. A share in a house boat at Lake Powell!

8 People I admire:
1. My Mother
2. My Father
3. Jesus Christ
4. My Siblings
5. People who are genuine
6. My grandparents
7. President Hinckley
8. Those who are able to overcome

August 15, 2008


After the horrible deletion mishap last time I tried to blog I was a little done writing for a bit. However I have recovered and now here I am to update all on my life here in Ecuador a bit. I'm going to try and do smaller ones.

Things are going really well here. My heart is growing and I'm learning some awesome life lessons. Some of which are: what to do when your pants all the sudden become warm and damp, how to care for a baby who is ill, how to avoid getting lice, staying out of the line of fire when changing little boys and much more. It is great though, I feel like I'm giving and really helping these kids to have a little bit easier life.

A thought: This week one of the babies has been really sick and the workers say is a routine illness yet it is unlike anything I've seen. I spent yesterday holding and rocking her and I realized once again how blessed I am to have the life I do. The convince of a doctor appointment with a professional is something that I think we all may take for granted. I feel like I have so much to be grateful for and I love the country I live in. God bless the USA!

August 5, 2008

I'm so mad...

I just wrote a huge blog and it got deleted before I could post!

July 18, 2008

Another Eventful Week in Ecuador

This week has been another great one here in Ecuador. On Tuesday evening I found out where I'm going to be the volunteer over the site. I was selected to be over Casa Allegria. The Allegria site consists of three babies one of which is downs syndrome, and three toddlers one with a mild case of cerebral palsy. There were two other toddlers but they have recently, as of this last week, been adopted. Adoption here is sweet yet somewhat hard. It is so good to see them go with families that will love and care for them, but we do miss them. We truly do grow to love them.

My other site I will be over is called HML girls. We go to HML girls twice a week and do an activity somewhat like mutual. These girls come from all different backgrounds. Some have living family they are able to visit and are living at the site for education. Others are orphans that live at the site year round. They are so energetic and fun however due to the short amount of time we are able to spend with them it is hard to get to know them as personally and individually as I would like. It will be something to work for. I also was assigned to the Housing Committee and I will be over making sure rules of the house are being followed and that people are taking care of the house. Needless to say I'll be busy for this next month and a half.

The kids are doing amazing. One of the little boys has been really sick this last week. My prayers have and thoughts are often on him and I feel the Lord is watching out for him. My heart has expanded so much in this last three weeks it is incredible. I know that I'm suppose to be here right now and I feel that I'm learning a growing so much. There are so many moments that just steal my heart. One occurred as I was leaving from one of my shifts. I had been working with some toddlers and as I went to leave and, like I often do, I told them that I love them in english. One little girl looks up at me and in her few english words says "I love you, too much!" I feel very taken back by the love the children are able to give. It is amazing to me.

Yesterday was our first field trip day. We went to Inca ruins called Ingapirca. It was neat to see the small amount of structure that is left from their civilization, and as luck would have it, the day was beautiful! It was fun to see more of the countryside and the surroundings outside of our main city, Cuenca. After the ruins we were able to go to an old church built into a mountainside and see even more breathtaking views of the country side. The climb to the top was around 385 steps! It was really neat. I also got a little color from the sun. It happens easily because the altitude here is so much higher. It was nice to get out and have a day to enjoy the sites. I really do love it here. If anyone is looking for an experience of a lifetime I highly recommend Ecuador!

July 6, 2008


I've had some people ask about getting updates of the experience I am having here in Ecuador so I decided to jump on the bandwagon with all the sister-in-laws and Em and start actually using my blog.

Well, I have been here for a little over a week now and it has already been an adventure and learning experience for me. Our flight from the United States took us to Quito Ecuador, which is the capital. We stayed at the OSSO house there for the night and then took a forty-five minute flight to Cuenca which is the city I am living in for the next two months. The house that I'm living in is actually two houses hooked together by a back walk way. They are really good conditions and I'm enjoying all the crazy girls that I live with. There are so many different personalities that make it all so fun. As volunteers we are assigned to work two shifts a day with three shift off each week. During our off shifts we are able to do whatever we want, this is where shopping and site seeing within the city takes place most often. Our day starts with boarding the bus to go to our sites at seven, a break for lunch from noon till two, and then the afternoon shift ends at around six. The shifts make for long days but very fun and always different.

Enough with the technical stuff lets get to the real reason I'm here, the children. They are amazing. You can feel their love and sweet spirits. We have five main sites that we work at throughout the week. The first we call Cunas, it is about 15 little kids from 3 weeks to 2 years old. The second sight we all Casas. Casas has about 13 kids form ages 2-8. Both of these belong to one orphanage run by Catholic nuns. The three other sites are from the orphanage that OSSO recently opened up. Here there is; Milagros, with older severely handicapped kids; Allegria, with healthy infants and babies; and Esperanza, with younger severely handicapped children. They are all so sweet and each one provides a different experience.

I am loving it all. It has been and will continue to be a humbling, life changing experience. I appreciate all the love and support I receive and love any updates I receive. I couldn't do it without you all. :)

April 9, 2008

A Few Intense Thoughts on HIV/AIDS

HIV/AIDS could be described as the most unique an disease this world has faced. The disease itself and those affected by it bring a very different moral aspect to an illness. From the first cases of diagnosed HIV/AIDS the disease has left much confusion and many unanswered questions. In the beginning of AIDS in America the disease was thought to be the “Gay mans disease” and was thought to reside only in homosexual men. Many believed that it was God’s way of punishing homosexuals for engaging in unclean acts or participating in activities that were impure. Has this idea of the disease being a punishment been done away with? The stigmas related to HIV/AIDS are found all throughout the world.

In Southeast Asian countries the sex industry thrives. Many people involved in the industry have been or will be impacted by HIV/AIDS. Efforts to encourage and even enforce condom usage in sexual interactions have had promising effects and are ever being implemented. But is the disease considered a moral issue? Is it seen as something of a punishment? Religious contexts of many different religions see sexual intercourse with sex workers as abominable. By various religions it is believed that people who are involved in sexual activities outside the bounds of marriage are sinners. The main means of HIV/AIDS transmission is through sexual relations. Would it be fair to state that this disease is a way of punishing the sinners, the people who break the laws of God?

If this is the case then what of those thousands if not millions of women and men who are faithful to their partners who become affected by their partners actions? In Africa the number of women infected with HIV/AID has surpassed that of men yet it is shown that it is often the men who bring the disease home to their families and communities. Are these women then being punished for the actions of their partners? Along the same lines what of those early hemophiliacs who through untested or impure blood transfusions, here in the Unites States, were infected with HIV? Many of them were very mistreated and school children were forced out of schools because of fear.

I do not wish to answer this question in regards to the moral and religious opinion of HIV/AIDS but merely wish to raise thoughts and ideas pertaining to this disease. I personally do not feel it is our place as human beings to make such judgment calls. The truth of the matter is that HIV/AIDS is a major problem and is continuing to spread. It is an issue that needs to be addressed. Aid needs to be given to those countries especially where it is spreading in epidemic proportions. I have a firm belief that it is our responsibility to try and protect the victims of this disease in any way possible. In order to do this there needs to be a comfort level for people affected to feel that they are able to speak up and receive help. We do not need to agree with or condone any act that we feel is unacceptable, but it is not our place to place judgment on people who are affected with this deadly disease.