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Hi I'm Joanna

I'm mom of 7 kids, step-mom to 6 more. I'm a Realtor and broker. I enjoy gardening and the outdoors. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I grew up in Tempe, Arizona in the 70's, a day when you looked around and saw farm fields. Although I raised in a strong LDS family, I have had to develop my own faith and come to terms with the different things I have encountered in this life. I attended BYU in Utah and was married while there. We had 5 children. Unfortuneately, that marriage ended in divorce, and fortuneately, I become married again to a wonderful man, also from Tempe and a family friend, who had 6 children of his own. We have had two children together since. The five oldest are grown, the five middle are quickly approaching that age, and we have three little ones. A much larger family than I had ever expected, but a wonderful one! I taught secondary English for a number of years in Utah, and both my husband and I are now Realtors with our company in San Tan Valley, Arizona. I like to garden, cook, and keep up on what is going on in the country.

Why I am a Mormon

Today with the internet and the accessibility of all kinds of information-- some true, some exhaggeration, some false, and some somewhere in the mix, I think I've probably read or heard a bit of everything in support of or against the church being "true" or not. I have had to think through, and pray through, a lot of troubling experiences and exposure. My testimony comes down to the answers of a few basic questions: Did I live before this life? Why am I here? Where am I going after I die and what's the big plan? I choose to continue belonging to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints because I agree with its teachings that Jesus Christ was born as our brother and the son of God, that he atoned for our sins and died for us, that he set the perfect example of righteous behavior, that He was resurrected, that He is going to return as promised, and that we will all be resurrected as well and have the choice to continue progressing onwards. I will never let go of this hope nor my faith in it, no matter what I read on some anti-church site, or no matter what bad thing someone who I admire or revere does. I feel peace when I decide to put my faith in Heavenly Father and commit to doing my best. The church is a good organization with noble efforts, good people, and great accomplishments. It's a good church to belong to in an effort to bring more happiness and fulfillment to life. Simply put, I am happier when I have the gospel in my life than when I contemplate all the negativity out there or talk with friends or loved ones who decide they know better and take a different path. I'm wise enough to acknowledge there is much I don't know and no way I can know in this life, because although I do have faith, I do not have the level of faith described by Nephi who had the mysteries of life unfolded to him. But someday I will know. And I don't want to have any regrets. And if I die and there is nothing, at least I was happier while here!!!

How I live my faith

I am thankful to have the gospel in my life. When I was young, I enjoyed the youth group and activities. I loved girl's camp. I liked the campouts with the families. We did a lot of fun stuff. I liked I tend to analyze and think deeply about things, and I don't have the answers to everything. But I do have faith and I know of the purpose and power of faith. Faith must be nourished through prayer, scripture reading, and a commitment to following the help guidelines God has given us so that we can be protected and the happiest in this life. I do have a testimony of the commandments and that they provide freedom in life and protect us from the many negative consequences of not obeying them. I've experienced that first hand. I am far from perfect and I make a lot of mistakes, so I am thankful for the atonement. I will not give up! I love the Book of Mormon. There is so much good information in there: historical, spiritual, personal. In my heart, every time I read, I say a thank you to those who sacrificed their time to make and keep records specifically for us in this day. It's pretty awesome reading and I can't think of many better ways to bring the Savior closer in our lives. I listened to the guest speaker on Rush Limbaugh today, 10-10-11,say Mormons are not Christian because we have another book of scripture. Does he think the middle east held the candle on keeping records? We learn in Mormon's records that there are even more in addition to that that will come forth in their own due time. I belong to this Christian religion because of the entire complete focus on our Savior, Jesus Christ.

What are Mormon Temples used for?

I hear some women complain of their insecurities regarding sexism and control. One thing I learned in the temple is that men and women are different, each with their own strengths, each with their own responsibilites. Not one is better or has more than the other. We must always remember to be taught by the Holy Ghost and learn to maneuver through the behaviors, philosophies, and ways of the natural man. Initiatories are a reminder to me, a female, that I have great priesthood resources and responsibilites myself both here on this earth and in the life after. Neither man nor woman will be raised above the other or have more "power" or "control," but they are to help each other and be partners, blessing each other's lives in their own respective ways and abilities. I have enjoyed what I have learned about the creation of the earth in the temple. We are created in God's image. The animals were created individually and commanded to multiply in their own kind. Seeds were planted. I think it would be pretty exciting to create an amazing, beautiful planet and then be able to go live on it. When I see a sunset, beautiful fall colors, spring flowers, the tide, I am reminded that someone who loved these things created them for our enjoyment as well and to bring us joy and variety in life. Show more Show less