Hippies on The Mount of Olives.

We had a ridiculous day in Primary today. Yesterday we got a call from the teachers of the Girl CTR 5 class wanting us to teach their kids today too. We said yes thinking it wouldn't be too bad. Well, all our boys came, along with all their girls and two visitors. Yeah, 14 total! It was a mad house, I got hit in the crotch three times, one of which was with a belt. Wha wha. Thank goodness for my angel of a wife or else someone would have died and I'm not thinking about the kids.

Today's story comes from sharing time. The lady who was teaching held up a photo of Jesus teaching the Sermon on the Mount. This one to be precise: Anyway, so the lady asks the kids who the picture is of and they all said "Jesus", which she followed by "and who is he teaching?". David in our class, who I didn't even know was paying attention, yells out "Hippies!". Yeah it was great. I guess we all need the gospel, even hippies, right?

Jake and Jess


Sharing our time.

Today was our turn to do sharing time in Primary and I will just say that it is good that it only comes around once a year. As I have mentioned before, our boys are quite the handful. Not to say we don't love them and enjoy being their teachers but it is hard to keep a room of kids quiet when the ones in front helping you are being the most rambunctious.

We taught about missions and missionaries, which did go over well. We had 2 boys and 2 girls dress up from different parts of the world and then the rest of the children guess where they are from. For a few weeks now when the boys were bad, Jess would threaten them with having them wear the girl's outfits. Anyway, when Jess started to hint "This is a country in Europe and you eat it for Thanksgiving", they shouted out "hot tamales" and "pancakes". I want to go to their Thanksgivings. They also guessed "Montana" for "It starts with M and is in Asia". Cute kids.

We ended it with having them color little missionary badges we made and telling them what missionaries do. Despite the chaos, it went pretty well. Sometimes riding out the chaos is the only way to manage it.

Jess and Jake.


A Not-So-Octupus' Garden.

Jess and I have been growing a garden this year and it has been coming along quite nicely, as you can see by the bouquet of radishes. Too bad Jess says they taste like "salty dirt" (like that would even be a bad thing).

Our tomato plants are huge! We have 23 of them, celebrating my 23 years of life here on planet earth. We are excited to eat nothing but tomatoes here in a few weeks but in case we get sick of them, we are more than happy to share. Just holla if you want some. We also have squash, peppers, beets, carrots, corn and some melons growing. Anyway, here is a photo tour around our garden. Enjoy :)

Big thanks to everyone that has helped so far. No garden is an island, or something like that.



Oh boys.

So for a while now, Jess and I have talked about blogging our stories of teaching Primary. We have had so many funny and touching experiences taking care of Jonah, Hunter, David, Tate, and the two Gavins. We are not going to attempt to back track (though I wish we would have started this a while ago) but simply relate a few things we take home with us each Sunday.

Jess- Our class is in charge of Sharing Time next week, so we're going to talk about missionaries. We're going to have our boys dress up as children from around the world, but we also have girl costumes so I kept threatening them with that. They were good so they won't have to dress up as girls next week.

Jake- Well going along with the Sharing Time, when I asked the boys what they wanted to teach about, Tate yelled out "we could teach jump on Brother Workman" and proceeded to do just that along with two other boys. Now, these boys are all five or almost five so they can be quite the handful sometimes but I really enjoy how they feel comfortable around us. Every week during opening exercises they have the need to tell us "I'm getting a dirt bike not tomorrow but the next day", or "I know how to erase my brother's saved games on the Wii whenever I want". We, of course, do our best to direct their attention to what is going on and try to keep them reverent, but I like that they want us to know what is important to them.

Jess and Jake



As an assignment for one of my classes this summer, I had to read and respond to Sonnet 130 by William Shakespeare (which you can find here). I created my own version of the poem in a bit more modern terms. I thought I would share the finished product with you.

My lover has skin,
though void of a brown glow
Her legs aren't found at Gold's Gym
or in a Beyonce video
Her feet can clear the room
after her office job and high heels
and she's more likely to think of fruit
if you were to mention "appeal"
I don't think I would find her,
air brushed and bare,
in line at the grocery store
published in swim wear
Now if you think these are problems
then here's where you should stop
because love is with a person
and dream girls aren't made in Photoshop.

I wrote my poem based on an interesting video Dove put out (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MFPGa0pKyTg) which shows how the "flaws" are taken out of the media images we are fed. A completely unattainable sense of beauty has been created, causing so many problems in our world. Coming from a family with 3 little sisters, it really makes me sad.

Love, therein, is the answer.




64 hula hooping Jessica's.


The 4th.

The wise words of a three year old from our Fourth of July dinner.

Weenie Wife

Last night I was awakened to the sound of Jake calling me a weenie in his sleep. He was leaning over me and I said, "What?" He proceeded to call me a weenie again. I asked him, "Why'd you call me a weenie?" He just mumbled something and fell back asleep. I guess now we all know how he really feels.

Jellystone 2

Well, I was telling Jess tonight how I really enjoy the things we have done and preserved on our blog so I have decided to give you the low down on our Yellowstone trip before it's too late.

We went up with my family, both my sister's fiances, and two of my mom's sisters with their families. It was really fun having so many people up there with us. We stayed two nights in the Old Faithful Inn, which was great. It's like this huge-log-cabin-hotel-place that is over a hundred years old. Our third and final night was in Roosevelt, where Teddy Roosevelt stayed while on trip to the park. We had several cabins that we all stayed in and it was pretty fun, complete with wood burning stoves to keep you warm.

I think Jess had a good time, minus the dirt and bugs and cold and the random rotten egg smell. I know she likes the confidence that comes with completely prepping herself for the day so it was nice to have showers and such instead of a full on tent adventure (which is happening in Southern Utah come August). She's just great and full of more natural beauty than she lets on.

Anyway, for the most part we just hiked around and picnicked. We saw tons on animals, including some black bear cubs and a wolf, and enjoyed the green scenery spring run off leaves behind. We did get a flat but it was easily fixed while we walked around the Old Faithful Geyser Basin. It was just nice getting away, the minute we got into the pine trees, daily life seemed so far away.



Two is better than one.

So I played a show tonight at an interesting place called The Boing! Collective. It is an anarchist group living in a house together who often host shows for free. They were very nice. Anyway, during the duration of the evening, I had it reaffirmed again and again tonight that I am so much better with Jess than without her. Even sitting on a hard wood floor, sweaty from just having played for 25 minutes, and listening to a dude with a mustache and a nylon string guitar, is enhanced by doing it next to Jess.

I could not quite put my finger on this "two is better than one" thought until after the show. I had been feeling the emotions that went along with it but the idea was not articulated until we were eating a late dinner at Cafe Rio. We shared a drink, as usual, and Jess happened to spill the whole thing right after I had just refilled the cup. Now, spilling sucks, it is never fun to have sticky pants and sprite in your salad but if I would have been alone, the amount of sucking would have increase exponentially. Having someone to worry about more than yourself is essential for being happy. I told Jess not to worry, that it was about time for a spill and this means that it wouldn't happen again for a while. Reassuring someone that everything will be alright is equally as therapeutic as hearing it yourself, if not more. When I am aspiring to keep "everything ok" for Jess, and anyone around me really, it is much easier to see my own life and challenges with a positive spin.

Thanks Jess.


Note to Jess- I know that evenings like these aren't too "normal" for newly weds in our situation but I am so grateful to you for letting me have this musical part of life.