Saturday, July 30, 2011


One of our sweet missionaries wrote this in an email to all our other missionaries:

Many of you do not know me, but I had the privilege of serving with some of you. This news is devastating for us all, as we all know and love the Rife family and benefitted so much from their selfless sacrifice to take their young family across seas to Korea to serve the Lord (and us). Most of us can only imagine the flood of emotions they are going through right now, and I'm sure you are like me in being willing to do anything to help, but feeling helpless and not knowing exactly how to help. If there is one thing that I have an unwavering testimony of, it is that of the law of the fast. Imagine the power of several hundred returned missionaries fasting together for their "mission mom" and her family. Therefore, I propose that we join our faith and love in fasting/praying next Sunday July 31 in behalf of sister rife and the entire Rife family. No matter where you are, or what your circumstances are, It is something small we can do for this exemplary family who has touched and impacted each one of our lives. Fast for each of the Rife children and their families as they could all use an extra measure of comfort and peace. Fast for Elder Michael Rife as we all remember very well those first few months in Korea and how trying they can be in and of themselves. Fast for an outpouring of faith, comfort, peace, and tender mercies to be poured out upon this incredible family. Fast for whatever you feel guided to fast for.

Our Relief Society President extended an invitation for my dear RS sisters to join in. And we have found out that the Pusan Mission will also be joining. I feel honored and humbled to have so many fasting and praying for me. But I am, oh so grateful, at the same time because I believe in the power of fasting and prayer and I believe in God-given miracles! I pray that my life can be extended, that Michael will be comforted and be able to complete his mission to the Korean people, and that our family will be able to feel comfort and peace.

From the bottom of my heart, I thank everyone who is joining me in this fast. Thank you!

Its all good!

Friday, July 22, 2011


Since March I have been having some symptoms: slurred speech, weakness in my hands, weak eyelids, excessive emotions. I had a busy March with getting Michael off on his mission and having a new granddaughter in New York. In April I finally headed to the doctor and had an ultrasound of my throat. A nodule was discovered on my thyroid and it was subsequently biopsied and found benign. It didn't have anything to do with my symptoms.

Then I was referred to a neurologist. In the month and a half since then I have been put on two different medicines for myasthenia gravis; neither one helped with the symptoms (but I was privileged to have all the side effects). On July 21st I finally got into the U of U Neurology department to see a specialist and I was diagnosed with ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease or Motor Neuron Disease. It is a degenerative disease that attacks the motor neurons and they just die off. There is no cure. There is a medicine that seems to arrest the development of the disease for a time and I'm starting that today. About 50% of people die within two to five years, but there are also people leaving with ALS for 5-15 years. I hope to be one of those!

I'm grateful to have as my doctor, the leading specialist on ALS in seven states. They have a great ALS clinic at the U of U where people come from all over the western states.

It was a devastating diagnosis - we're calling it a "major bummer!" The hardest part was telling our children and mourning with each one. We were able to talk to Michael in Korea and tell him the bad news. I promised to keep his dog, Annie, alive while he was gone, now it seems I need to keep his Mom alive while he is gone.

I have many things to be grateful for: 53 great years of life on this beautiful earth, 35 years of a wonderful marriage with the love of my life, being a mother to six beautiful children, being Nanajan to seven grandchildren. As I have heard of people being diagnosed in their twenties, I have been especially grateful that I was able to raise my family before this disease struck me. I've had a truly blessed life! I'm not afraid to die, but I will miss being with my family.

My new favorite scripture is Mosiah 24:15

"And now it came to pass that the burdens which were laid upon Alma and his brethren were made light; yea, the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord."

If I had a "bucket list" it would be the last fourteen words of that scripture. In the mean time I'm going to live my life to the fullest every day!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

YW Camp 2011

We had an awesome year at camp this year. The weather said thurnderstorms every day, but we really only got enough rain to keep the dust down. It was perfect. Our little ward with only 7 girls and 5 leaders had a great time together. I made my 12th trek to Lone Pine.


on the way to lone pine, there's still lots of snow!

Lone pine

our ward at lone pine

camp shalom from lone pine

lone pine in the distance