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Hi I'm Michelle

I grew up in Utah and now live in Alaska. I'm a wife, mother to three, and a music teacher. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

Music - I love music. I mainly sing and play the piano right now but I have spent many years playing the trumpet and flute and a handful of other instruments as well. I have a degree in Choral Music Education and I love to teach - especially young people. Family - I am the oldest of 9. It was crazy growing up but we are all best friends! My husband is the second of 7 and we just will not feel complete without a full house of our own. We are currently part way there with three beautiful children. I get to stay at home with them while my husband pursues a Master's degree in Archaeology. Home school - I was home schooled growing up, but I also had the opportunity to take many classes at the local public school. This split allowed me to take just about every music class offered and I am still enjoying the benefits from participating in both worlds. Travel - Although I haven't had the opportunity to do it recently, I really enjoy traveling. I have been to 9 different countries so far. Switzerland is my favorite but I also really like England and Canada. I'd love to get to Australia and some islands one day! Reading - I love love love to read! I always have. I enjoy reading a variety of genres as long as they are clean and well written. Recent accomplishments - With my third child, I had a VBA2C or Vaginal Birth After 2 C-Sections. It took a lot of personal growth and strength I didn't know I had in me but I made it!

Why I am a Mormon

I was born and raised in the church. Some people get to a point in their life where they question the beliefs of their parents, but that was not me. I always knew it was true and could not deny it. A lot of my strength comes from my mother. When she was young, she attended church each week, even when her parents did not or when it was not easy. Growing up in her home was the same way. We went to church every week. It did not matter what might have stood in our way. If it was cold, we wore coats. If there was a lot of snow, we wore boots and changed into dress shoes there. If we didn't have a car, we walked. If our meetings were early, we laid our clothes out the night before. When there were 9 children to get ready, the older ones helped the younger ones. My mother also read to us from the scriptures regularly. She helped us understand the words better by modernizing the scriptural language and adding actions and emotions into what she was reading. I still remember specific moments from the Book of Mormon that she brought to life. My mother continues to be a glowing example of faith in my life. Now that I am grown up and in my own home, I stay strong in the church because I know it is the right thing to do. It brings joy and fulfillment to my life. I feel at peace when I am at church and especially so when I am in the temple. Through many decisions of my life, I have sought the Lord's guidance and received answers to my prayers. I know with a surety that He is there and is concerned with me. I would feel so lost if I did not have that. I can feel in my heart the truthfulness of what the gospel teaches. I know that Joseph Smith was a true prophet and that the Lord continues to guide His church today. The Book of Mormon is a true book that will turn our hearts to the Savior. Families can be together forever if sealed with the proper authority and we continue on in righteousness. I have prayed and discovered for myself these things to be true.

How I live my faith

For four years, I conducted the adult choir in three different wards. (We moved once and then got assigned to a different ward.) After that, we moved again and within a few months I was called to teach the music to the children. Similar fields but very different settings! For the adult choir, I had to be sure to select music that was within the abilities of my singers and pianist. I also needed to make sure that it was reverent and appropriate for church. We rehearsed before or after church. I helped the choir prepare and perform music about once a month for the ward. When I worked with the children, the trick was to keep them always engaged! We played lots of vocal games which are great for catching attention but also good for the young, developing voice. Towards the end of the year, the children put on a program for the ward that included speaking parts and music. It was beautiful. It let parents and others know more about what the children were learning about that year. I always take assignments to be a visiting teacher. Being a visiting teacher helps me get to know other women in my community. I usually go with another woman and we visit a few women to get to know them, see how we can help with any needs that they have, and to share a message of the gospel with them. Through visiting teaching, I have been given many opportunities to serve. I love that warm feeling you get when you are serving others! Many of the women I have visited have taught me things. I have learned about anatomy, teaching, being an upright citizen, love, patience and a myriad of other things. As a pianist, I have had many opportunities to play the piano. We have a lot of music at church! I have played for the children's group, the women's group, and the general meeting for everyone. This past year I even took on the adventure of learning to play the organ! I still have trouble with my feet but now I can proudly say that I do play the organ.