Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mother's Day Weekend

This weekend has been great! We are currently packing and getting ready to go to Europe. I am excited and nervous. Im worried that Im forgetting something critical like my shoes or a rain jacket, but I have been assured by Brock that I am bringing more than plenty of stuff. So with all this stress of packing it was nice to take a break and spend some time with family.
The weekend of relaxation started friday morning when Brock and I went on a 15 mile bike ride around town. It was more like cardio on steroids. Gig Harbor offers beautiful views of the harbor but along with these views, it offers some of the biggest hills I have seen. The bike ride definitely kicked my butt! On our bike ride we went to this great pizza place called Fondi's. It was really good and to get our Italian celebration on, we ordered italian sodas. YUMMY! After lunch we headed back home and relaxed for the evening. 
Later that night we went with the family to the movies to see Dark Shadows. I thought it was going to be allot funnier than what it was. It was weird and at some points scary. But how can it not be, it is a Johnny Depp and Tim Burton creation of course it is going to be bizarre. Overall, I did like it.

On Saturday, we headed over to Pasco, Washington to visit some of Brock's family on his mothers side. I met his Aunt Jody, and his Cousins Wendi and Tracy. Wendi has two little boys and the most adorable baby girl I have met. We played with the kids and headed over to Red Robin for lunch. Afterwards, we went back to their home and played with the kids some more. Its always fun meeting new family and fitting right in. They were awesome and we were a little sad to leave at the end of the day. When we finally said goodbye we parted ways and got back on the road. In Brock's family it is always tradition to stop by in Yakima and go to Miners Burgers. I was burgered out so instead I had some chicken strips. OMG were they good! Definitely a yummy tradition!
This Sunday we woke up early to wrap our presents for mother's day and to prepare dinner for later that day. We went to church and the children were so adorable in sacrament. Mothers day has always been one of my favorite holidays because I can show how much I love my mom and do nice things for her. Unfortunately I was far from home but I called my mom to say Happy Mothers day. I am so thankful for all the hard work she has done to give me the life I have lived. She is my number one role model and best friend. I couldn't wish for anyone better than her. I love you mom!
Overall, our weekend was fun and well enjoyed with family. It was exactly what Brock and I needed before our great adventure. Next time I'll be blogging from Europe! See you then!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Here it goes!!

Brock and I are going to.......backpack across EUROPE for a whole month!!! We leave May 15 and get back June 19. How exciting is that!?!? probably thought I was going to share a baby announcement, sorry to disappoint. Europe is exciting enough, isn't it? (I think so). I have been keeping this secret for about 6 months and 9 days already and have been miserably counting down for our departure. Six months is a lot of days, 192 days to be exact, 4,584 hours, 275,040 minutes, 16,502,040 seconds. Yes, a very long time and I cannot wait any longer. Only 4 more days left!!!

So why are we going now? Let me back track just a little. I have been dreaming to go to Europe all my life and I just thought it would never be possible. In between moving to different places, going to school, finding a job, and getting married, going to Europe was just never in my plans. Luckily, we have graduated and don't have to move to Texas until the end of August. We have no worries of school or jobs and all we have in our hands right now is FREE TIME.

When I was in Oklahoma on my internship, Brock shared the news with me on his birthday. I was bummed that we couldn't be together on his special day and he cheered me up with this news. He had been dying to tell me and couldn't hold it any longer. He wanted to go to Europe to celebrate our 1year anniversary. How romantic, yes I know...he's my hubby :) Ever since we have been planning....well when I mean "we" I mean more like Brock has been planning all the details of our amazing trip. I am so blessed to have such a great husband that does all these really nice and meaningful things for me. I truly am a lucky girl!

The reason why we never shared the news was because we didn't want to jinx it. It was too good to be true. Also, we wanted to make sure we had enough money to go. And I know that there are so many of us who want to go but just don't have the opportunity. I didn't want to be a snob and rub it in peoples faces. So we just kept it to our selves, a marvelous secret full of magic! It just made it more fun to look forward to.

So just to give you a little sneak peak. We will be flying out of Seattle to Atlanta. From Atlanta we fly to Madrid, Spain. We will be traveling by train all across Madrid, Barcelona, Paris, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, and Greece. Most of the time we will be staying in hostels and I think we are camping out by the beach. I am so excited!

Don't worry, I will definitely take a lot of pictures and post them when I get back. Also, If you have gone to Europe share with me some tips and favorite places you went. It would truly help. Alright well thats it! Now I have to start packing! Thats another challenge I have to conquer, c'mon Im a girl how can I fit a wardrobe in a backpack??!?!?! Wish me luck! Au revoir! (Thats french!)

Sunday, April 22, 2012

The Real World: Brock and Paola

So these past weeks have been filled with really important events in our lives. Im so blessed to have such a great husband to share with and experience these milestones in my life. In these past recent weeks I have:
Taken the last school exams of my life.
Graduated from BYU-I with A Bachelors in Emergency Services
Moved out of Rexburg, Idaho
and said good bye to some of my dearest friends :(
Accomplished being married for one whole year with Brock and celebrated by going to the Cheesecake Factory in Boise :)

Celebrated my sister-in-law's birthday by going to Red Robin and watching The Vow

Gone on a free helicopter ride provided by Grandma Cooper :)

Visited my parents in Utah and went to the SLC Tulip festival.
Visited Brock's Parents in Gig Harbor, Washington.
......and Started packing our things to move to Dallas, Texas.
You would think that after graduating all the stress and chaos would go away, but looking back at all the things we have done and accomplished since graduation have made me realize we have been BUSY! However, memories are being created and I have enjoyed every single one of those moments. Now is the time when in the future I will look back and remember so many great experiences. I am thankful for a loving husband and family because it is because of them that I have had the strength and will to reach these successful goals in my life. So what now? Brock got a great offer in Dallas, Texas to work as an accountant at Price Waterhouse Coopers (PWC). I will be looking for jobs in the ER so cross your fingers for me. I am scared and anxious for what lies ahead in the near future but in know that with the guidance of my Heavenly Father and my family, Brock and I will be successful. 

Monday, December 12, 2011

Updated The Blog!

Finally! This website has been under construction for way too long! It took me most of the day to figure out codes and designs. People make it look so easy out there but trust me it is not that easy!! The good thing is that I am ready for if you couldn't already tell. Today we had FHE and my Mother-in-Law taught me how to make these lovelies! 

Reindeer Sugar Cookies!

Aren't they adorable? The clever thing about these delicious cookies is that you don't have to go out of your way to find reindeer cookie cutters. Im pretty sure most of us already have all the tools in our kitchens to make these. You just use a gingerbread man cookie cutter and turn the cookie upside down. Its that simple! The icing is just store bought chocolate and vanilla frosting. I cant wait to eat these bad boys :) I'm telling myself to hold off for at least an hour but i dont know if that is going to happen....

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Marriage Covenant

Choice #1 (section 132):
“That which is wrong under one circumstance may be and often is, right under another. … This is the principle on which the government of heaven is conducted—by revelation adapted to the circumstances in which the children of the kingdom are placed. Whatever God requires is right, no matter what it is, although we may not see the reason thereof till long after the events transpire” (Teachings of the Prophets Joseph Smith, p. 256).
Read and ponder the quote above. Then, complete Step 1
Step 1    
Read the Historical Background in the student manual for Section 132. Then write a sentence or two to explain why Doctrine and Covenants 132:1–33 are more relevant for us today than the remaining verses in the section.

The reason why verses 1-33 are more applicable than the other verses in our lives at the current time is because we do not practice plural marriage anymore. These verses emphasize the importance of marriage through the covenant. One must marry in the temple to be sealed for all time and eternity. One cannot be a king or queen if not having had that celestial covenant of marriage.

The other verses are not relevant to us right now because the practice of plural marriage has been banned by the church for a long time now. 
Step 2    
Choose 4 of the remaining activities that are most pertinent to you to study so that you can better understand this important doctrine

Activity 1. Read Doctrine and Covenants 132:1–6. Also read the student manual commentary for “Doctrine and Covenants 132:3–6. ‘If Ye Abide Not That Covenant, Then Are Ye Damned’” (p. 327), and for “Doctrine and Covenants 132:4. Will Those Who Do Not Have the Opportunity to Marry in This Life Be Damned?” (p. 328). Then write responses to the following:
• What is the meaning of the “new and everlasting covenant”?

The meaning of the new and everlasting covenant is when a man and a woman get married and sealed in the temple. They make the everlasting covenant. 

• Explain in a few sentences why those who understand this law must abide by it to progress eternally.

This law when partaken of it has to be taken very seriously. Its not like you can get married in vegas and the next day get divorced. It is a serious covenant that two people promise to make and not brake. They are sealed forever and through this they can become kings and queen in the celestial kingdom. 

• How can an individual who does not have the opportunity to marry in mortality claim the blessings of “the new and everlasting covenant”?

Those who do not marry on earth during this time still have an opportunity to receive the blessings of the everlasting covenant. They will not be punished and will be rewarded according to their good deeds.

Activity 2. Read Doctrine and Covenants 132:7–14 and the student manual commentary for “Doctrine and Covenants 132:7. What Does It Mean to Be ‘Sealed by the Holy Spirit of Promise’?” (pp. 328–29). Write a paragraph that explains what the Holy Spirit of Promise has to do with marriage and every ordinance in the Church. In your paragraph, also explain what a married couple would need to do to have their marriage “sealed by the Holy Spirit of promise.”

To be sealed by the holy spirit of promise means to be approved by the lord. It means that everything that has been sealed in the church through it has synonymously  been approved by the lord. One a couple is married they have to:

If a couple—
Then they will—
1. Are married in accordance with the Lord’s law
1. “Inherit thrones, kingdoms, principalities, and powers, dominions, all heights and depths” ( v. 19 )
2. Are married by one who has the keys of the priesthood
2. “Pass by the angels” to their exaltation ( v. 19 )
3. Have their marriage sealed by the Holy Spirit of Promise
3. Be gods for all eternity (see v. 20 )
4. Abide in the covenant
4. Have a “continuation of the lives” ( v. 22 )"
 Activity 3. Read Doctrine and Covenants 132:15–18. Then write answers for the following:
• What is the situation described in Doctrine and Covenants 132:15–17 that would lead to a 
marriage lasting only for mortality?
A marriage that is lasting only in mortality is a marriage that has not happened in the temple or has been sealed by the holy spirit. However is they have been married but not worthy of the covenant they remain in the world. 

• Doctrine and Covenants 132:18 describes a marriage between a man and a woman that, although performed in the temple, “is not valid neither of force when they are out of the world.” Referring to what you learn from this verse, explain the conditions that can keep a temple 
marriage from being valid for eternity.
 "18 And again, verily I say unto you, if a man marry a wife, and make a covenant with her for time and for all eternity, if thatacovenant is not by me or by my word, which is my law, and is not sealed by the Holy Spirit of promise, through him whom I have anointed and appointed unto this power, then it is not valid neither of force when they are out of the world, because they are not joined by me, saith the Lord, neither by my word; when they are out of the world it cannot be received there, because the angels and the gods are appointed there, by whom they cannot pass; they cannot, therefore, inherit my glory; for my house is a house of order, saith the Lord God."
They must keep the covenant to keep this marriage worthy. 

• How does your response to Activity 2 of this assignment help you understand the meaning of Doctrine and Covenants 132:18?
It makes me understand that not only do you need to marry in the temple but it has to be seales by the holy spirit of promise too. 

Activity 4. Read Doctrine and Covenants 132:19–25 and the student manual commentary for “Doctrine and Covenants 132:19–22. How Does an Individual Obtain a Fullness of God’s Glory?” (pp. 329–30). Then write a paragraph that explains in your own words the eternal possibilities that await those who righteously enter into and live according to the “new and everlasting covenant” of eternal marriage.

As i read these scriptures i was able to understand better on the blessings that one will receive from the everlasting covenant. Me and mu husband read verses 19-25 and figured out that if one wants to be a king or queen and have thrones to must follow the covenants you make in the temple. You must stay worthy and then you will be able to be an eternal couple. My husband through it was weird that as a king you will have angels and servants, i thought too and that made me think too, what determines who will be a king/queen or servant/angel? Hmm. Good study lesson though. One of my favorite things to do is to speculate of what wil happen in the future.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Priesthood Power!

The priesthood is a power that governs the Lord’s church (the Relief Society is also organized under that power), and priesthood callings call one to perform specific responsibilities of service. How can having the priesthood operating on the earth today magnify your ability and works of service towards 

I really enjoyed pondering this topic of the priesthood this week. I have a strong testimony that i know this power is true. I have experienced both situation in my life where i have had the blessings of the priesthood and where i have not. Growing up i was not a member of the church. My father did not hold the power of the priesthood because he was catholic. Later, when i got baptized at the age if 10, it was only me and my mom who were members of the church. I could notice that our home was a lovely home but yet somehow there was something missing. It was weird to hear that my friends would talk about how their dads would give them a blessing the day before a new school year. I thought that it was silly because we only got blessings when we were really sick by the missionaries or the bishopric. 

However after 5 years of going to church, my dad warmed up to the idea of listening to the elders. He got baptized and was finally able to hold the priesthood power. I finally was able to feel complete in our home. He was able to have conversations with us about the gospel, also have FHE regularly, and overall more harmony in our home. My dad really stood out in our home as a strong and confident man that i was proud to look up to. 

Now that i am married to my husband, i am the happiest woman there could ever be. My husband is a strong member and priesthood holder. He is my rod of iron that i look up to each and every day. I think that the main reason why he is such a strong man is because of that Melchizedek priesthood. I believe that it turns an ordinary man in to a rock and steady foundation. It has been a weird but yet wonderful transition on being able to have a blessing done by my husband whenever i want. A blessing for school, when i am sick, when i need help to think clearer, or when i am having a bad day. I love the opportunity that it gives for me and my husband to grow stronger in the gospel and as an eternal couple. 

As a sister in the church i think it is very special the ordinances that we are blessed to do and keep in the temple. I also think that we may not hold the actual keys of the priesthood but we can bring life into earth and our children are able to have those keys, well.....our boys :) I think that the way that we can be blessed as sisters is by supporting our husbands, fathers, and children to be worthy to hold that priesthood. If they are not worthy then they cannot receive revelation from our heavenly father to bless us an others. 

I was able to share this topic with my mom and we had a wonderfull discussion. She has had a similar experience like my story and now her husband holds the priesthood as well. She is blessed in so many ways in her life. What she gets the most out of the priesthood is comfort. She has this chronic back pain that has bothered her for quite a long time now. However many medical consults she receives or the many medications that they give her, none of them seem to work as well as a priesthood blessing. I am so happy that she cn enjoy of the blessings that she receives from the power of the priesthood and that she is a firm believer. 

I love my heavenly father and i know that the reason why has put such a special power in this earth for us is to show his love for us and as a reminder that we are divine beings as well and that we are able to have the same powers that he holds. 

How has the priesthood power blessed you in your life?

I wanted to share this children's song with you, i love it! 

Thursday, October 6, 2011

This week i had a conversation with my roommate on why it is important to attend the temple. Then i had a class assignment on the importance of the temple. So here are my thoughts on what i have learned. 

Choice #5 (sections 95:8-17):
As the Saints endeavored to build a Temple, opposition from the Adversary intensified and the work stopped for a time.  In these verses the Lord chastises the Saints and promises them the means to accomplish his commandment concerning building a Temple. What reasons did the Lord give for asking the Saints to build a Temple? How does the Temple fulfill those purposes? How does the Temple bless your life? What opposition do you face in getting to the Temple; what things do you put before it? How can you make the Temple more of a priority and center of your life?
The temple is the greatest blessing given to man in the present time. In the verses the lord tells us the reasons for why he wants this temple built. He states that he wants “the lower part of the inner court be dedicated unto me for your sacrament offering, and for your preaching, and your fasting, and your praying, and the offering up of your most holy desires unto me, saith your Lord.” In those times the chapel and the temple were in the same building. He wanted it to be a place of worship and a place where we can take the sacrament to renew our covenants. Its is very similar to our times because we use gathering buildings now to worship, take the sacrament, fast and offer our most holiest desires. In a way you can view our wards as small temples.

Then he says that he wants “the higher part of the inner court be dedicated unto me for the school of mine apostles, saith Son Ahman; or, in other words, Alphus; or, in other words, Omegus; even Jesus Christ your Lord. Amen.” This is think he refers to the actual sacred grounds of the temple. In the temple we have the special opportunity to converse with the lord by performing endowment sessions and being led by the Holy Ghost. I believe that this courtyard that he talks about it the holiest of holiest places in the temple where our prophet can converse with the lord and receive revelation.

Over all the temple fulfills all these purposes because we are able to offer up prayer to our heavenly father. We are able to perform the work for the dead. We can seal families for eternities. We can always learn a new thing every time we go an use it as a rock and foundation in our lives. We can come and converse with the lord and offer up special prayers for those in need. There are so many other things that we can do that really make this place a school for learning to all the members who are worthy to attend.

The temple blesses me in so many ways. Describing every blessing that I receive will make this a list that is never ending. However some of the blessings that stand out the most for me are that families can be together forever. This very blessing is so special to me. My husband and I barely got married and now we will be able to spend the rest of our eternity together. I could not imagine not living with him after this life and for this reason I am thankful that heavenly father had made it possible to be with your eternal companion through the eternities. I am thankful that the temple is not only for the living but also for the past and future generations. I am also thankful that we can attend as many times as we want to renew our covenants. I am thankful that they are everywhere in the world and this is a great blessing because I can attend anywhere and still feel like I am at home and everything is the same. This helps me allot right now in my internship because whenever I fell homesick I can always go to the temple and feel like I was at home.

Some of the oppositions that I face in trying to get to the temple are that sometimes it is too far or they have really random times for temple sessions. And it has been a trial to coordinates it with my work schedule. However I have marked my calendar ahead of time so that i don’t forget to make plans on days that I plan to go to the temple.

The temple is a priority in my life. If it weren’t for it I would be some crazy girl running around stressed for my life. The temple is a place of peace and calm. I view it as my sanctuary from this crazy world. It is my “comfort food.”