Standing Outside the Temple

My grandparents on both sides of my family lived in Bountiful, or about 30 minutes from our home in Ogden, Utah. We visited them often. My grandpa Tingey was the first person I knew who owned an Atari 2600, and I spent many hours sitting on my knees at a wobbly card table playing Asteroids, Combat and Blackjack. While the Tingeys were Mormon, my father's parents were not, and I understood this … [Read more...]

Considering My Health

At the end of November I went in for what I figured would be minor surgery. I took a few days off work assuming I'd be back within a week at the latest. But sometimes your body has other plans, and I ended up being in bed for most of December. I was able to read, watch Netflix and listen to podcasts during that time, but at about the two week mark I felt like my mind wasn't holding up well. … [Read more...]

Giving Thanks

After the last of the meat was removed from the turkey, the dishes placed in the dishwasher, left-overs bagged and put in the fridge for tomorrow, I had a few moments to contemplate the day without hungry kids pulling at my sweatshirt. The week had been a rough one with Kim having tooth pain and two root canals within a 4-day period. A couple of kids were coming off illness that kept them home … [Read more...]

You Have a Choice

I was 10 years old when the Mormon church lifted its ban on African Americans holding the priesthood. I was happy yet very confused because I'd been taught at home and in church that God cursed them with black skin because they had not been as valiant before they came to earth. Other people around the world also had dark skin, but only those of African descent were held to the ban. I don't recall … [Read more...]

You Are Not Alone

Leaving your religion can feel like a lonely solo journey. When I decided to halt my activity in the Mormon church I felt Chuck from Castaway, stranded on my own island. Living in a small town in Utah didn't help my feelings of isolation. I joined a couple of Facebook groups full of people who were going or had gone through a similar transition. Many of them were confused, but most were angry. And … [Read more...]

What Mormon Women Get

I was listening to Mormon Stories Podcast yesterday and got to the end of the first episode that covered the latest General Conference. Jamie Handis Handy talks about her role as a woman in the church, and knocks it out of the park. I'm glad that my two daughters won't grow up in a church that sees them as second class citizens. … [Read more...]

Serving a Mormon Mission in Germany

Leaving the MTC for Germany was an exciting time. I'd never been out of the country, and I was headed to a country to teach people about my religion in a language I could barely speak. But I was with a group of people I'd learned to trust and love, and I figured I'd be fine as long as I could have some contact with them and my family. I was assigned to a small town named Siegen which was a … [Read more...]

Preparing to Serve a Mormon Mission

Over the past 6 months I've watched as our oldest daughter went back and forth about which high school to attend. She eventually decided to attend a smaller school that most of her friends will be attending. We discussed the different approaches to academics, orchestra and other after-school activities, but her decision was primarily influenced by friends. Had most of them decided to attend … [Read more...]