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Hi I'm Annie

I speak Spanish and now I'm working on Chinese. I love Marx Brothers movies and don't take myself too seriously. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I grew up in rural Northern California, among rice fields and almond orchards. We spent summers tending a garden, canning peaches, and trying to keep trees alive on our 10 acres. We used to rattle around in our old pickup and get excited whenever we noticed a crane, a skunk, or a hawk out the window. Even though I live in a suburb now, I still love bumpy country roads and spotting wildlife as I drive. Now, as a mom, I hope to be able to instill the same excitement about rural America in my own children as was instilled in me. My boys are quite small and very very active, but already I can see that they love animals and the outdoors. We spend a lot of quality time on walks, hikes, and drives, trying to notice the world around us, especially the natural surroundings. It never gets boring! Before I had kids, I spent 8 years as a high school Spanish teacher. I have a real passion for languages and the magical feeling it gives me to just utter a few "abracadabras" in another language and be able to connect with people from across the globe. While Spanish is my most proficient other language, my newest challenge is Mandarin Chinese. As a college student I lived in Taiwan for a semester in order to study Chinese and soak up a bit of the culture, and it blew my mind! Now I have such a "language wish list" that I'll need to live a very long time in order to learn them all! I love flowers and trees, and always try to grow as much of my own food as I can. Gardens are great!

Why I am a Mormon

Who wouldn't want to live in a way that brings great joy? By adhering to the precepts of the Gospel of Jesus Christ that are the foundation of the Mormon Church, I am able to look at my life without shame and without fear. I know that I am a flawed and fallible person, but that I can repent of mistakes and sins and begin again because of Jesus Christ's atoning sacrifice. I know that His same sacrifice brought him into complete acquaintance with me and my circumstances, pains, sorrows, delights, and worries. That means that I never have to feel alone or misunderstood. My involvement with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints brings me closer to my Savior. It buoys me up at times of trial and reminds me of the eternal ramifications of this earth life. It guides me as I try to be a wife and mother. I especially cling to the promise that my husband and I will be married not just until death parts us, but for eternity, AND that our children will also be part of that eternal family. All we have to do is honor the covenants that we have made to each other and to our Father in Heaven when we were married in the LDS temple. Because my hope is that the family that I hike with and talk with and eat breakfast with every day will be with me in heaven, too, still excited about new discoveries, still active and crazy. What could be more heavenly than that?

How I live my faith

I've had opportunities to work in lots of different capacities at church. My favorite has been to work with the girls in the congregation, young women from ages 12 to 18. It's so rewarding to plan lessons and activities for them that will help them develop stronger feelings for Jesus Christ, greater feelings of self-worth, and a deeper desire to serve others. Besides being meaningful, working with youth is invigorating and FUN! I feel younger, sillier, and lighter when I am around young people who have such enthusiasm and zest for a life that they are just beginning to live! Beyond Church service, I believe that being a conscientious citizen, a friendly and responsible neighbor, and a helpful and trustworthy adult are all things that I strive to be each day. Voting my conscience, caring about conserving the resources of an overburdened planet, and educating myself to be a member of a global community are responsibilities that I take seriously for myself as well as for my children. And I believe it all stems from my firm knowledge that this Earth is God's creation and we are all His children.

What is being a Mormon like?

One of the early prophets of the Church, Brigham Young, said :"If you want to enjoy exquisitely, become a Latter-day Saint and live the doctrines." That's how I feel about it, too. Being Mormon is like being anyone else, except that there is an increased capacity for joy that comes from knowing: who we are in a cosmic sense, where we were before this, where we are going after this life, and what our purpose should be while on earth. With those biggies taken care of, it's a little easier to enjoy the journey and not get so hung-up on whether our favorite team makes it to the superbowl or if our house is as nice as the neighbor's house. Being Mormon is happy, if everyone works at it. But being Mormon also involves work. We take on responsibilities for each other as part of being Mormon. For example, I am a "visiting teacher" in the women's organization, like almost every other woman at church. I am assigned to keep up with several other women in our congregation, visit them monthly with a spiritual message, and lend them support or a helping hand in times that they need a little extra help. We all have this assignment, and so we always have someone outside our family that we should be able to turn to. We also take part in the lay ministry by accepting various assignments or "callings" to teach different lessons, or to share a message with the whole congregation. These efforts not only uplift others, they also give us opportunities to grown personally. Show more Show less