Josh, Emily, Brook, Kristie, 40 Horse Cave, Nov 24, 2012

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Karma, Blessings and My Relationship to My Food

Thank you all for your comments! I learned from your thoughts and I hope that we can continue to uplift and help one another in our similar yet individualized experiences.

The Lotus Temple of Spanish Fork, Utah

I have been thinking about a presentation I went to a couple of years ago by the Utah Krishnas (see for more information about these amazing members of my community). They have a gorgeous temple in Spanish Fork and the lecture I attended was an explanation of vegetarianism and how karma applies to all we do and, in this case, to the food we eat. One concept in particular struck truth in me and has been entering my mind lately as I continue my journey: they do not taste or eat any food, even while they are preparing it, until it is ready to eat and they have taken part of the food and offered it to Krishna, their lord. How does this apply to Mormon me? Oh in so many ways. Most basically, how do I prepare my food? Am I ravenously preparing my food anticipating not so much the flavor and purpose of the food but rather feeding my hunger and belly? Do I eat 1/3 of the dish before we are even ready to sit down to eat?

What do I take from this? Prepare food "with and eye single to the glory of God" which sounds a little strange applying this scriptural phrase to food, but I will explain. God's "work and glory is to bring about [our] immortality and eternal life... (Moses 1:39" Immortality, immortal, mortal. Our bodies are key in our mortal life. Here and now. They will be an integral part of our eternal life as well as perfected and resurrected bodies. So, we are eternal beings made up of Heavenly Father's DNA (spirits) and our earthly parents DNA (bodies), going all the way back to Eve and Adam. What I eat and how I eat it affects my body. My physical health affects my intellect (mind). My mental health, included my thoughts about everything including my own self image, affects my spirit. My spirit affects my body. And so on, and so forth and not necessarily in that order all the time. I cycle through my starting points to find my balance, my karma.

What to I learn from the Krishnas? Love myself. Love others. Love, understand and show gratitude for all sustenance I receive. So, though I may do a little taste test, first I recognize the blessing the food is to me; I recognize what the food will do for my body; I humbly thank the Lord for the food and ask him that the particles will fill my body's need for energy as well as my spiritual need to see those particles and how they react with my body as a blessing. As long as I choose what is best for me, my body reacts in positive ways to the food I eat. That doesn't mean that I don't ever eat chocolate, which I firmly believe is manna from heaven, especially during a few short days every month (women, you know what days I mean). I limit my indulgences, which is not easy, but I feel so much better about myself when I do.

I am grateful for food. I love the foods that are best for my body. I am constantly discovering new ways to enjoy foods and keep my body in perfect health.


Monday, May 16, 2011


I have decided that I want to share some things on our blog that I am going through. It may just be my own way of getting things out, maybe it might open a dialogue between the few readers/followers of the blog, or it just might be interesting to read about what I go through and how I try to work it out. However this may go, it is helpful, to me at least.

I am working on many personal things right now. Without going into exact detail and without putting them all down like a "pity me" list, I will put them all under an umbrella statement: "My Journey to Self-Forgiveness ." I have thought in the past that it is easiest to forgive others such as friends and acquaintances and even family (though forgiving family has been complicated for me at times). Now, I recently discovered, that all others are easiest to forgive and that the most difficult forgiveness is of myself. Many wonderful experiences and people fill my past and memories; yet, with the amazing and joyful moments come hurtful ones, most unintentional, but equally damaging to my sense of who I am in the present moment.

Many may read this and think "how can this be!?! She's amazing and blah, blah, blah." Not to undermine the compliments or the perception others have of me, but, in case it wasn't known, I am human. I carry emotions in my own way; most physically as a result of my non-confrontational, afraid-to-feel-or-cry-in-front-of-anyone persona I have acquired through certain experiences. The truth I have discovered: this is not healthy. At all. I am working on releasing many negative things and I have seen a great improvement mentally, physically and spiritually--greater BALANCE, greater peace and I can turn off my mind and JUST BE. It's in those moments Spirit to spirit conversations occur; I come to know more about my true self, which I plan to discover my whole life.

I have made many positive and very effective changes in my life. I am constantly discovering new ways to take care of my body, my mind and my spirit. These three things, that I believe make up my true self, need a healthy balance just as my time needs a healthy balance. To create a healthier body I started a vegetarian diet several months ago. I physically feel stronger and have learned to control my eating habits in a more effective and positive way. I have also started an exercise regimen; nothing too extensive, mainly I focus on being active at least once a day. I haven't really set many goals for myself other than to GET MOVING. My physical progress has been at my own speed and in my own time (which I know is the Lord's timing for me at this time in my life).

Having a healthier body has opened my mind to new understanding and knowledge (see D&C 89) and I am more aware of inspiration as it enters into my soul. These have become a catalyst for greater growth and confidence.

One hard thing for me to do is to not compare: not to compare myself to anyone around me, anyone at the gym, family members, and especially not to what I once was like. I love my body now and am grateful for what it has accomplished, especially in the past year and I have a beautiful daughter to show for it!

I am being the change I want to see in my world. It starts with me. So, yes I may be selfish about a few things for a while until I find my balance (don't worry I do not neglect the wife and mother aspects of my life).

I am beautiful. I am at peace with myself. I learn more about my true self everyday. I forgive myself everyday. I love myself. I find balance in every moment.


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Spring/Summer Plans

Since Brook dominates our blog, I thought I would post some things about Josh and I before putting more videos and pictures of our amazing daughter.

Josh is doing well with school as the year is winding down. He has enjoyed doing many things this year, including some new thing such as running the stage crew, teaching debate classes and helping with debate and mock trial, coaching basketball and finishing off his fifth year teaching!! Amazing! He is such an amazing man; of course he is, he puts up with me!!

He has enjoyed his calling and has finally settled into the rigors and time commitment to being the executive secretary in the ward. He loves the Bishop and the bishopric members and has grown so much through his service. I myself am also learning much from his calling such as patience (which runs short sometimes) and love and support of my husband has he fulfills his duties.

I finished the winter semester last month and I have loved being able to spend so much time at home and with Brook! We are finally getting some good weather so Brook and I spend a couple of hours each day outside. It is amazing how amazing I feel when I can spend time out in the beautiful creations of our Lord. I am so grateful for everything that gives me so much joy in my life!

I am working a little more right now at ARUP: 3 hours Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons, all day Fridays and 4 hours or so on Saturday mornings. I am grateful that I have been able to pick up more work since we stopped our cleaning job a month ago. We use to clean office buildings and a a plastic surgery business (we found some interesting things there, let me tell you!). We are grateful for that job and the help it was to us while I was unable to work much at ARUP.

I will return to BYU in the fall to finish off my degree! I have one semester left of classes then I will student teach. I have decided to student teach in both theatre and Spanish and I have already let my supervisors know so they can start planning for that. I will teach mostly theatre classes and have one or two classes of Spanish to teach at the same school. I also am preparing to take the PRAXIS tests for both disciplines. I have a lot of work to do over the summer to best prepare for those and also for my student teaching. I have the set the goal to write several unit and lesson plans so that I can be ahead for when I get my Teacher Work Samples ready (they are like extensive resumes that show my work, amazingness and great talent in order to help me get jobs).

I am going to Alaska 5 weeks from today with my sister Kellie and I am really excited. We will be staying with my cousin, camping and living it up! We have a few more trips lined up for the summer and we are looking forward to spending time together with family and friends.

Now on to the gorgeous Brook. She is such a joy in our life and we are grateful to have her as our daughter. She is starting to show off her attitude and personality through her jabbering and by getting into everything!! She stood up by herself for the first time yesterday using the couch as a help, she tries to crawl on her knees but gets board with it after two crawls so she drops to her quicker army crawl, she waves, she whistles (not on purpose but when she is concentrating she purses her lips and some whistles escape) and she makes us laugh. Her are some photos and videos of our girl!!

Brook playing at the Post's. Such an amazing girl!

She fell asleep on our walk last Saturday. She's starting to fill in her carseat well!
So happy!

The girls!