Mission Possible

This just in, it appears that David R, I repeat David R has gone in to the world famous Provo Bakery and has successfully acquired a box of goodness (code word for Doughnuts) a dozen to be exact. More will be revealed as we get our information from our inside source......


Mission Impossible

This is a story of agony, of pain and of anguish mixed with a bit of martial arts, midgets and explosions. How hard is it for a kid to have been dreaming of something for so long, like a trip to Disney Land and he or she comes to find out that daddy and mommy are flat broke so instead of going to Disney this year son/daughter we are going to Trafalga! ha? no? nothing? well that is how hurt and disappointed I was, this.... is ..... my endless heart brake.
Lets start from when I first tasted the goodness which is known around the world as The Provo Bakery, My hermano Brian has a tradition when ever we go to Idaho to visit the Family, he always brings them goodness in the shape of doughnuts. Now until this last time we went for our Nephew's baptism I had not had these little round treasures, but I made the grave mistake of actually partaking of the joy this last trip. I had what I consider to be the best doughnut ever, raspberry covered. Oh! I am getting a bit hungry for some as we speak. I put it in the microwave for 10 seconds and I had a big glass of milk to go with it.... it was life altering. Never had I known that doughnuts could be so good, they should be illegal because of how addicting they can be.
Fast forward to 3 weeks ago, I was not feeling so great. I was coming down with the flu and I hate being sick because I almost never get sick, but when I do it takes a bit to get rid of it. So I decided to take a half day from work, it was a Wednesday morning and I had been craving some Provo Bakery since that fateful day in Idaho. So I called my wife and told her I would be stopping by to pick up some goodness (code word for doughnuts). I pull up and I'm like a boy at a candy store..... but this candy store was a doughnut store and the boy was me, so in a way nothing different but..... OK you get the point. I start to salivate allot, I don't know where to begin so I do what any normal man would do in this situation, I ordered an assorted dozen that way I can fall in love 12 times.
It was a joyous week because we had goodness in the home, it lasted long enough for my wife and I to get addicted, so when they were gone our home felt a bit empty. Somehow coming home from work was not the same, I felt a void in me and I couldn't point it out. It felt like something had died inside of us. It was hard, the withdrawals were severe and painful. Specially with the flu and nothing to cope with. It was a lonely week and then I decided last week that I would stop to get some more goodness, a dozen but only this time we would get only Apple Fritters, Raspberry doughnuts, and my wife's favorite the Butter Milk ones. It was a beautiful sight to imagine, our home would once again be filled with love and joy.
It was Monday, I drive after work to accomplish my mission, get a dozen doughnuts and get out, but sneak a bite or 2 just to ease the nerves. I drive up to the building and it looked a bit desolate like in the spaghetti westerns, tumble weeds rolling by without a care, the noise of wind whistling off cracks from the walls and of the trees. I was a bit nervous, my heart jacked up the palpitations to its max, my palms started to gather perspiration, my mouth got a bit dry from anxiety but like a man I was ready for the outcome. I got off my trusty steed (2000 Nissan Maxima) with both arms out on both sides, my fingers twirling to my sides as if ready to draw my guns off the holsters I walked up slowly to what came as a surprise..... the door had a sign that read Hours of Operation Tuesday trough Saturday till 6 pm closed Sunday and Monday. NO!!!!! I yelled out at the top of my lungs, dropping to my knees in shock and terror. How would I overcome this great blow? would I be able to get back up? would I be the same ever again? only time would tell.
I Finlay snapped out of it and regained consciousness, I took out my phone and dialed the boss.
The Boss (Jenny): Did you get it?
The Henchman (David): No, we stumbled across a bit of a problem
The Boss (Jenny): What is it?
The Henchman (David): They are closed on Monday
The Boss (Jenny): How is that possible? the plan was perfect!
The Henchman (David): I know, I am sorry this happened. Please give me another chance and I will accomplish the mission tomorrow, one more day is all I ask.
The Boss (Jenny): Fine, you have one more day to carry out this mission before I pull you off it. But I still need something from you today, I need a treat.
The Henchman (David): Copy, I shall retrieve something from the gas station. I will not let you down!
The Boss (Jenny): I know you wont, or else.

I drove to Texaco to get her some hot Cheetos and a powdered doughnuts for a snack. Tuesday came around and the anticipation was high, I was walking towards my trusty steed when the boss texted me, "Getting Doughnuts?" to what I replied "Yes, on my way" I was on a mission, not only for my sake but for the boss's sake as well. Knowing that her butter milk cravings were getting out of control I needed to accomplish this or else all would be lost. I drove up, I was determined to finish the task at hand with flying colors. I open the door and with a burst of machismo I said "I need a dozen" to what the girl said "OK, what would you like?" oh man I had been waiting for those words to reverberate from within my ear drums for almost 2 weeks and now it was here. "I would like... 4 raspberry ones" I say, so she grabs 4 of them. "OK, what else?" she asked, "I would like 4 apple fritters please" she starts monitoring the display, with disbelief I i closed my eyes and thought of a happy place where doughnuts never run out, where you can eat as much junk food as you want and never get fat, but that thought was disturbed by the worst thing I have heard in a good while. "We are actually out of apple fritters" she replayed. What?! no apple fritters? what is this? where am I? the twilight zone? this can't be, "No apple fritters? well do you have some in the back?" I say in a panic. "No I'm afraid we don't" she calmly responds, does she not care about my cravings? "OK what about 4 of the butter milk ones" I say, and again she starts looking for them. "Ah, no we are out of those as well"

Can you believe this? what was I to do? I stand there struck with a glare of disappointment, my mouth was wide open, as if I had just witnessed a murder or something horrible. "But those are the only ones I want" I respond, so she tells me with a smile "Well, would you like to place an order for tomorrow?". No I don't want to place an order for tomorrow! what are you mad?! I need my fix now woman!, and you don't have what I want, com on!. "Just cancel the order"I said and with a sad face I retreated back to my steed and called the boss.

The Boss (Jenny): Well, do you have them?
The Henchman (David): Negatory, they are out
The Boss (Jenny): What?!
The Henchman (David): Yes, they are out of fritters and butter milk
The Boss (Jenny): Well you are out of this one, I shall get them from some one else
The Henchman (David): But from who?
The Boss (Jenny): I don't know, Albertsons?
The Henchman (David): Are you kidding, once you have these everything else is garbage.
The Boss (Jenny): Well Ill think of something, for the time being go back to the hide out. Ill see you when I'm done with work

So to this mission impossible there is no happy ending, we have yet to eat goodness from the Provo Bakery, and its Thursday. I'm starting to itch a bit, but its OK because I shall try again on Saturday, one last attempt at completing this mission. You hear that world? I shall do this no matter what! stay tuned Until next time.


I Pray for Strength

"The Miniature Schnauzer is a breed of small dog of the Schnauzer type that originated in Germany in the mid-to-late 19th century. Miniature Schnauzers developed from crosses between the Standard Schnauzers and one or more smaller breeds such as the Poodle or Affenpinscher. The breed remains one of the most popular, and as of 2007 is the 11Th most popular breed in the U.S"
as Quoted by Wikipedia.
This is a picture of Shyli as a new born, she is adorable beyond words. My wife and I are so happy to have her and she is truly making Sammy a whole lot more active and happy. Let me take you back to the tale and the adventure it has been trying to get a puppy for Sammy.

It all starts July 4Th, 2008, our neighbors the Wilmer's had 2 Mini Schnauzers, Bella the girl and Billy the boy. They had just had a litter of 4, and honestly I had not even been wanting to get another dog as with Sammy we had the perfect dog, he is 5 years old and so well behaved, he is well mannered and so calm. My friend Mitch gave him the name "The Butler" because he just comes and sits next to you just to make sure you are comfortable. Jenny her brother Brian, Sister Cristina, our Niece Lindsey and I were coming home from my sisters 4Th of July bash. We had one thing in our minds and that was some sweet Piedra Fria or Cold Stone as the white folk refer to it, so we stop by the house to drop Sammy off and to get some cash for our endeavors when we spot Jason Wilmer watering his front yard, I go over to say hello and ask him about the dogs, how they doing and if they had gotten rid of all the puppies, he said that they had one left, a girl. My niece heard this with her child bionic ears and yells out "Puppies!? I want to see the puppies!" so I asked him if he could bring her out so that she could get her vice taken care of. The following events took me by surprise.
There we were sitting in the front yard waiting for Jason to comeback with the dog, when he finally returned he was caring this little black ball of fur, and I fell in love with her. I have always been a sucker for dogs and until Shyli I had never owned a puppy of my own. Lindsey is loving on her like any 9 year old would but there I was like a dog on heat holding back the urge to grab the puppy from her and run!. I remained calm and my wife was the next one to hold her and she says out loud as she is getting the dog "Aw its Bridget!" and I look at her like what? she just melted Jenny's heart, and I was happy because she had me too. I look at her and tell her, "We could get her if you want, it be nice to have a Friend for Sammy" She was contemplating the thought, we went as far as to take the dog for the night to see how Sammy would react to her, but when the time came to make the choice my wife and I decided it wasn't the right time for a puppy.

Time went on and I was so puppy sick, I just really wanted one, I would sit at work for hours looking at KSL dog adds. I eventually came to an arrangement with Jenny, we would wait 9 months and then for my birth day we would get one, to what I agreed but honestly 9 months was way long to ease my dog fix. I eventually found another Mini Schnauzer for real cheap, I told Jenny and again she had to talk me out of it as it was something we just did not need nor were able to afford. We changed the time from 9 months to till after we got a car as our old Ford Station Waggon "Sally" was giving out on us. Time moved on and October was upon us, we were the owners of a new car so as we had agreed we were in the clear to get a puppy. Not far from the first day of November Jason Wilmer comes up to say hello and to tell me that Bella is pregnant, I was so excited that I told Jenny right away. For sure the time had to be right, she wasn't due till late November, which actually turned to December and Finally on December 9Th the puppies were born. As a gesture of friendship the Wilmer's gave us the first Pick of the litter, so I let my wife have her pick, and she picket out the cutest girl, she was always shaking, so my wife named her Shyli, because she was Shy..... or so we thought.

We brought Shyli home on the 23th of January, and we could not be any happier. She was so adorable, our first taste of what a baby might be like. I know she is just a dog and that a kid is much more work but if you think about it having a pet is just as hard as having kids, in no way am I comparing the two but I like to see it that way. Jenny wakes up at 3:30 am to take her potty every day, I come home for my lunch at 11 to let her out, we need to feed her 3 times a day and sometimes we come home to messes in her kennel. Its not an easy task and I can honestly say that at times she does get the best of me, but like all good things, it takes time, effort and a bit of work to get the best out of them, and she is a part of this family now. She is no longer that shy and shaky puppy, she is now an energetic and independent baby dog who just won't leave poor Sammy alone, she is always biting him so I gave her the nickname "The Piranha". She is a hand full at times but for the most part we love having her with us and even Sammy has warmed up to her antics. I shall try to keep my emotions calm as I need to be patient with her. I pray for strength.. Help me Cesar Millan! help me Barbara Woodhouse!, help me Paul Owens! please help me someone?...... but honest, with a face like that how could you stay mad at her?

Her First Bath

Her First Time Home

Her Sleeping inside of Jenny's coat hoodie


The art of forgiveness

For the people who know me know that I am a die hard fan of the BYU football team, I just love the thrill of having a home football team that I can root for. If you live in Orem or Provo you know that since Bronco Mendenhall took over as coach the team has been getting better and better, thus making the tickets harder to buy, specially if you like to wait until game day like I used to. This is a story of love, of how the human heart can act in the worst of cases, of how one must learn to just laugh at life's hard moments.

It had been a great year for the Cougars and I was able to score tickets for a few home games, I was dating Jennifer Young (now Jennifer Roura) and she was not a big football fan like I am, the closest she been to being a fan was in High School, she was a cheerleader for school and to her credit she was not familiar at all with football or its rules, so I took it upon myself to change that (if she was going to be dating this hunk of man, she sure as heck was going to learn to love my Cougars).

The days were getting close to the end of the season and I was trying my hardest to keep up with the ticket purchases, I was just not used to having to fight for the right to own a 17 dollar piece of paper that gave me the right to have an uncomfortable bench all the way up in the nose bleeders. So I got in the habit of buying the tickets early at the Marriott Center. It was getting better to this point I had been to a couple of games so I decided that one more would be great. Jenny and I decided that we would go to one last game with her brother Brian, keep in mind that to this point Brian wasn't sold on the idea that I was going to be taking his baby sister away from him. So 2 week prior to the game we go and get the tickets and its all love man! I mean we got tickets and I was loving it.

The day of the game was upon us, Brian calls me and asks me if I know of anyone who would like 2 tickets to the game, so the first person I think of is my man Andres, so I say "yeah man, I think I know someone" So I call him up and he is like "you kidding right?, the game is sold out" I said "man you know I got's the hook up Dwag!" in my best effort to pretend I'm gangsta. Jenny and Brian come to my home and we take off to that fateful event that for all I know was a make or brake for our future life. I had been guarding the tickets like crazy, I had them in a white envelope in my jacket inner pocket the whole time and I was not about to take them off my eyes.
We picked up the extra 2 tickets for my friend and his son and off we go to the circus which is finding parking for the game when it had already started, if you been you know that it is literal hell trying to find a spot. I was driving my Jeep and to find a spot for that car was not going to be easy, but I was up for the challenge. We finally get there and it is a mad house and if there is one thing I hate is not being able to find a parking spot when something sweet is waiting for me. We eventually found a spot but as It was a challenge to park, I handed Jenny my ticket and hers with out the envelope, as well as Andre's 2 other tickets, Brian had his as well. I finally parked the car after a few maneuvers and near misses of another car's bumper.

On we go to the game, we start walking and the conversation is all great, laughter, love and joy but boy was that about to change. Andres lived in American Fork so he was just going to call us as soon as he got the stadium for his tickets. We had walked a good mile from where we had parked and I get the feeling to ask Jenny for the tickets, she grabs hers out of her coat pocket but she tells me that I have my ticket and the two extra ones also, my heart literally sunk to the pit of my stomach, my eyes got big and wide with disbelief, I retaliate "No baby, I gave them all to you when I was parking the car remember?" please say you do, I told myself. To this she starts remembering, "Oh yes you did" I was so glad to hear her say that, my heart beat was back to normal, my eyes shrunk down to their normal size. I began to smile again, but that smile faded when I saw her checking all of her pockets, jacket, pants, purse, nothing.

"I don't know where they are baby" I was getting so angry inside that as I am writing I am getting sick to my stomach at how much something so little could anger me. She was beginning to see my frustration, the mood was down now, it was no longer a glorious day but a sad a dark one. A day we had been looking forward to for almost 2 weeks was now a dreaded situation, I was holding back so many emotions, and I am sure Jenny felt so bad and dumb that she had lost the tickets, the tickets to her boyfriends addiction. I was ready to yell out but I didn't want to make a scene, I told them Ill be back Ill go back to where we parked and maybe ill find them. On my way back I was talking to myself, asking myself "why did you give her the tickets?" If only I would have kept them like I had for 2 weeks none of this would be happening, but now it was to late, I found myself walking all the way back to the car scanning the floor for anything that resembled 3 BYU tickets, but no luck. I was hoping that I would be able to find them inside or around the car but again no such luck. I had been dealing with some anger issues and I let the situation get the best of me, I punched the fender of the car and gave it a dent that was there until a bigger dent hid it from sight when Jenny got in a car accident last year, but that's another story.

I walk back to where they were hoping to see them giving me the thumbs up, in despair I got no such response. I was so mad, but what could we do? only Jenny and Brian had tickets and I didn't. Jenny was feeling so bad and mad that she told me why don't you and Brian go and ill just go home, for some reason that made me mad because we had just lost 3 tickets!.... I was like No! that's dumb, not the best reaction from me, she saw the anger and that made her react to it the same way, she got her ghetto attitude tone and said, "I didn't mean for it to happen, and you ain't making this any easier on me!" I was so fed up I was like what ever!, we start walking to the stadium and Jenny starts walking with Brian in front of me, and then among all that anger and frustration I hear Brian like always trying to defuse the mood, to cut the tension. Laughing and playing with Jenny trying to make her feel better about the issue he said "Gonka, don't worry this could have happened to any one of us, just know that one day you can tell this story to your kids" I was just amazed that he could take such a bad situation and turn it in to something to tally different. My eyes were opened, I felt like such a moron for making the woman I love feel stupid, this is not what a boyfriend is supposed to do... right?

I walked up to her and apologized for acting so dumb, the tickets were gone and there was nothing no one could do now but laugh. We eventually got in the stadium with the 2 tickets that were left, I called Andres and told him the bad news, he was disappointed but not mad. As for me I could hardly enjoy the game, I was so focused on how I made Jenny feel that I was overtaken by guilt. I learned that day that once someone forgives you the hardest thing to do is to forgive yourself. As time passed this proved to be the making point for our relationship, Brian saw that I was humble enough to apologize for being an idiot, and he embraced me as a brother. The Art of Forgiveness is a beautiful thing to have, I know that those tickets were meant to be lost, so that we could go through this right of passage if you will to see how much we truly loved and respected one another.


Life of a ghost

Life as an Illegal Immigrant in the United States is something you might not label as glamorous, the constant fear of knowing that your job is not safe, that people can take advantage of you because you don't have any rights, its a hard thing to swallow. In a constant struggle with life you learn to make lemonade out of lemons hoping for that brake, that chance at something bigger or different. Living in Mexico City was a hard thing for my family, coming from a family of 6 children and 2 adults was not an easy task for my father to deal with, but somehow like millions of others he managed. We lived a good life, not full of luxuries but what we needed was always there for us.

My brother was an independent man form the go and he didn't see his life going anywhere living in a country who's government is so corrupted that the normal man can't afford to feed a family with a regular job, only working for the government and or being a corrupted cop is almost the only way to get ahead. He decided to take his life another rout, he left for what many people consider the American Dream, a life full of opportunities and riches far beyond that of his or her country could give. To an extent this is not far from the truth, most people come to this country and find wealth, not millionaire status or mansions but a humble life, working for their needs and wants, such luxuries that one could not achieve in their country.

We followed my brother a few years latter, I was 10 years old and the year was 1993. My mother made a choice, to leave everything she had ever known to try and give her last 2 kids a better more productive life than the one they would have had living in Mexico. It all was a shocker to me, I mean I was fine living in Mexico near my father, and now I was thrust in to a life I didn't know, a language I was not that familiar with, but what could I do? I was 10 years old and therefor my life belonged to my mother, she was my protector and I had to do what she said. School didn't get any easier, as one may know kids are cruel, and there is no way around that, so when they see a flaw on someone they attack, and I had a major flaw, I was a new kid, a “wet back” (funny thing is that we actually flew in to this country legally) someone who did not belong there, I couldn't even speak the language. It was hard on me but I managed, I was placed in a class for language barriers called ESL or English as a Second Language course. To every one's surprise I picked up English in only 3 months.

As life went on I forgot for a moment that I was not a U.S. Citizen until the time came for me to get a job, oh boy that made me remember real quick. My first job was no problem, I worked at a car wash and was payed under the table (you get payed in cash so the government doesn't know you are working at all because no tax information is given) this was at the age of 14. Now, I was already braking the law because the legal age to work in California is 16 with a school permit. When the time came for a new job to come around I began applying everywhere, and the dreaded application process was one I didn't look forward to. Every field was ok to fill but there it was staring at me from a far, Social Security Number...... what do I do? What do I write in there? These were just a few of the many questions that came flying to my mind, I didn't know what to do so I would walk away or take my application to go.

As I got older I got wiser, I bought a fake Social Security card with a fake number that for all I knew belonged to someone else. Again I was braking the law but what could I do? I needed a job to provide for myself, to help around the home with bills. I know what most people think, why don't you just become a legal citizen? why don't you fix your status? well if it was that easy don't you think that so many Illegal Immigrants would have become legal by now? trust me I did my homework, allot of times I asked myself, why can't I just apply for citizenship? I should so I called INS and found out what I needed to become a legal U.S. resident, I needed to either be sponsored by a family member.... Strike one. Be sponsored by work, but they had to prove that you were the only one that could do that job and working at McDonald's or Wendy's was not a hard task.... Strike two. Get married and have your spouse sponsor you, well here is a scenario I knew one day would happen but I was not about to ruin some poor girls life just for my benefit so that was out of the question.... Strike three Your OUT!

For many years I had a secret that none of my close friends knew about, none of my girlfriends knew about, I was like a superhero with a double identity but without the super powers to fix my problem. I eventually moved to Utah and left California behind, after many jobs lost because of my social not matching my name and or age, how embarrassing is that? "Yes we see here that your social isn't matching your records, its no problem just go to the social security office and get proof that this is your number and you can keep your job" I mean what do you say to that? "Ah yeah no problem, I'm not sure why this happened. I will get it fixed at once!.... ah by the way when can I get my check?" and like so many people I would walk away from a good job because I didn't have the right to be employed in the land of opportunity. But you develop thick skin because after a while loosing a good job becomes par of the routine that is life without rights.

To my story there is a happy ending I eventually met the woman of my dreams and got married, she embraced my secret identity and so did her family, full on. Within our first year of marriage we got my paper work done and today I can proudly say that I have rights, I have a voice, I'm no longer a ghost with no identity, I exist, but I am one out of a Million people with broken dreams, of struggles, of hardships, of wondering when their brake comes when they can have a voice, the right to say, I need more money!, the right to say You don't pay me enough! without being worried that the next time you see a big green truck with the acronym INS on the side will be your last step taken in a country that was built by Immigrants.


The Light of the World

Darkness is the absence of light.

This is what my life was covered with from about the age of 16 until I turned 21. Living in the sunny state of California was a trip, although is not as bad as movies and t.v. make it out to be it's still bad enough for people not wanting to live there, I grew up in a City called Lancaster, the high desert. Not a bad place to grow up if you ask me but that was back in the 90's. As time passed by the city like many others has grown, and with that growth population has deteriorated. Now I am not trying to talk bad about the place I once called home, but it has gotten worse over the years.

So many stories to tell about my adolescent years, but if I wrote them all down we would be here for days, so lets just do a quick summary of what it was, I was not one for school, I mean I'm smart but I just lacked the interest to get the grades I should have had. I hung out with the wrong crowd, when I say the wrong crowd I don't mean I hung out with killers or thugs, I just liked to hang out with the guys and girls who like to party.

I had the same "friends" since 5Th grade and I was not one to make any changes, specially in high school where I could get my butt whipped in an instant. I didn't go to the best school in town so my expectations for a future were close to none, but none the less I graduated high school with allot of friend changes in the way, sticking to one friend, one who I could honestly call a good and true friend. With high school behind me I was ready to have fun, but I had been having fun since the age of 16, I'm not going to get in to much detail but I'm sure you can figure out what I'm talking about. Parties, alcohol, girls, and pot where mainly my interest. Not for long do, I didn't really like getting high, and the drama of dealing with a hang over got me off drinking quick, so my only vice if you could call it that was girls.

I come from an LDS family, if you don't know what that means its Latter-day Saints. The world knows us as Mormons. But the real name of the church is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I was raised to know right from wrong, good from bad and yet I still didn't agree with the views of the gospel. I always told myself that I knew there was a God, and I knew Jesus lived and there was a an evil in the world, and as long as I knew I was exempt from the rules, they didn't apply to me. So I did everything I was taught to be wrong. To my defense I was always contradicted as a child, you see my father was a devout Catholic who only converted to please my Mother (I think) and all of my brothers are not and weren't active members of the church, so all that was taught by my mother to be wrong such as masturbation, pornography, drinking, sex etc. was contradicted by my only male figures in life.

We are taught in the gospel that we are given free will, and that is the one thing God will never take from us, I had and still have my free will and I chose to use it to the best of my abilities. I didn't go to church,I didn't need to. I was in with the big guy and he was OK with me messing around, oh but if trouble came knocking guess what was the first thing I did? oh yeah got on my knees and prayed to Heavenly Father just like I was taught to do. Now that's something, that as a kid who was exempt form the rules of life, I always managed to go back to the good old fashion way of asking for help. It got me through allot, pregnancies, fights, tests, job opportunities, dates. You name it I prayed for it, but once I got my answer or what I asked for (or so I thought) I would go back to my old ways.

It's amazing the way we look at life through worldly eyes, when we let everything around us dictate our life, the media, government, friends but once your eyes are opened to what really matters you begin a whole new life, this is what happened to me. In 2003 I made one of the most crucial decisions of my life, I moved to Orem Utah to live with my aunt and cousins. There I was, this naive punk wanna be thug fresh out of Lancaster California, getting thrown in to the "Mormon" capital of the world. It was hard at first, bouncing form job to job, making all the same mistakes I was making in California and what was worse, for the first time in my life I was away from my Family, all that I knew for so long was no longer there. You begin to appreciate what you had when its gone, there is no doubt about that. I struggled for months trying to keep a job and I was getting fed up, ready to go back to what I knew, my comfort zone. Until one day my aunt Martah said to me, don't give up, there is light at the end of the tunnel just wait and see. If in 3 months you don't see a change I will help you move back home. That gave me a boost in motivation, I worked as hard as I could but still failure, job to job, no income, and not to mention my personal life was the same that it was in California.

My cousin Kevin is an "RM" Return Missionary (in the church young men go to serve a 2 year mission, this consist of preaching the gospel to anyone who is willing to listen. Women also serve missions but theirs is only 18 months long, they are the guys and girls in bikes wearing suits with white shirts and modest dresses with a name tag, I'm sure you seen them but if you haven't, when you do, be nice to them and listen to their message it might just change your life) He had approached me several times before to talk to me about church and how it was the only way and blah blah blah, but this time I actually listened. I had run out of options and I needed something different in my life, something that could give me meaning, keep me in line, help me succeed in life. So I said OK, ill give it a try. Not short after I got a job at Dialogue Marketing, this is where my life truly took a turn for the better. I met a guy named Jordan who was also an "RM" nice guy, full of life and spark. Religion was a topic of non stop arguing like always and I was used to the same robotic answers, but one day this guy gave one of the most honest answers to a question that I have ever heard. He caught my attention and after work I asked more questions and he told me to come to church with him, I passed but the seed had been planted.

Shortly after I was approached by him again and he asked me to come that Sunday as he was teaching class, I said I would try to make it. I asked my cousin if he would go with me and so him and his then girl friend (now his wife) went with me, and Jordan taught a beautiful class. I had never in my life paid attention in church, but he had my full and undivided attention. I was hooked, and after class was over he said one of the sweetest things to me. He told me that he had prepared 2 classes, one was design for me, and if I didn't show up he had prepared a totally different class. That touched me so much that I will never forget that day. To make a long story even longer I embraced the gospel like never before, this was a gift that I had my whole life but I never bothered to open it. The Gospel or "The Good News" has changed my life in ways that I never thought possible, and I continue to see improvement within me. I am a better person because of it and I owe it all to my Jesus Christ. Words can't describe the peace and love I feel inside, something that I never had and its all because of a few people who took the time to patiently wait for the right time to say something.

It is my testimony that God lives and he has a plan for all of us, Jesus is the Christ, he atoned for our sins. He is the light of the world and his Gospel has been restored on this earth through a young man named Joseph Smith Jr. Its our choice to listen, and its our duty to try and know. I say this in the name of Jesus the Christ, amen.

For more info on The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints please visit www.mormon.org


My personal Superman

I don't know why I'm writing so many intimate details of my life but I feel like I don't talk about this enough to get the pain out. If I were granted another shot at life, if there was one thing I could change or do better, it would be helping my father out more than I did. The last Phone conversation we had he was half delusional, I told him how much I loved him. Knowing that his time was soon at hand, I came to realize what a loving man my father was, not perfect by any means but a loving one none the less. So many stories to tell but the only one in my mind right now is the last one I have of him. A sad one........

My dad was a strong man, he stood about 5 11", a good 200 lbs, healthy as a horse. Ran like crazy every day, if I had to guess a good 3 to 4 miles. It had been along and rough road, full of hardships and pain, laughter and love. But like every road this one was coming to a bitter end. My dad like many people had made his fare share of mistakes and wrong choices, But none the less he was a good man. He came to visit us from Mexico about 2 times per year, once in April for my b-day and the other in December for Christmas. My hopes had diminished for him to move out to live with us in California. He had his life out in Mexico and even do he loved us, he would not give up his life in Mexico.Who could blame him it was all he knew.

It was either November or December I don't remember all that great, I think I blocked out the times and dates. We went to the airport to pick my father up for the last time at LAX, I always looked forward to seeing him, embracing him as he walk towards us with that walk of his, he was not the greatest looking man but he had presence and he knew it. But this time was different, it was the first time I saw him after the many and torturous Kimo therapies he had gone through to kill the cancer that was invading him. He came out of the pick up exit and honest I didn't want to admit that my father, my hero, a man who always dressed so well, who walked tall now walked slowly as if every step he took was a painful one. He had a hat on, which was a bit odd to me because he never wore one, but he did this to hide his bald head, no longer having that curly salt and pepper hair on it. His face was not even as I remembered, swollen and puffy. The Kimo took a toll on him. Always tired and his voice was not the one I recalled as a child, or even the one from 2 years ago. His demeanor was low, his ego was shot and I felt that he had given up that great fight he put up for almost 3 years.

As we drove home I remember my brother snapping a picture of him, one he still has to this day. It was painful to see my dad in this condition, to the point that I didn't want to be around him too much because it killed me little by little. Its like seeing Superman getting his butt kicked by Doomsday to the point of death. It's not supposed to happen, my dad was supposed to live forever. We had hopped that he would get better, and latter I learned that he would have made a recovery but for one year.... one whole year the hospital gave him the wrong Kimo Therapy........

We got together as a family one last time with almost every one there, my brother Victor and my sister Lilia were living in Mexico so minus them the whole family was there, I remember being at my sister Claudia's house for dinner and she made green Mole, this is a Mexican plate that my dad loved, but because of that sores in his mouth and throat he was not able to eat it, I remember sitting there watching him looking at the food, as he looked at his plate of steamed chicken, his eyes watering up. I don't know what was going through his mind at that exact moment but one can only imagine. One of the simple pleasures of life, one my dad enjoyed so much, now was something he couldn't do because of this damn disease!

After dinner we all talked and the mood seemed not as tense or fragile, we now were more accepting of my fathers mortality, we expected this man to live well beyond his 80's but God had a different plan or task for him.
Knowing that you are on the verge of death, as a father, the thing you want to do the most is to be around those you love, to amend burned bridges, to resolve any broken bonds or past issues. My dad talked to every one, and I guess he did it from oldest to youngest because I remember going out side to get some air and he followed after. We sat on the front yard. My sister had a little bench against the wall of her garage facing the yard. It was a clear night with a slight chill, I remember this because my dad had his hat on, and what looked like a turtle neck sweater was a gray scarf wrapped all the way up just bellow his nose, he also had on a black coat. He did his best to keep from catching a cold as his immune system was lower than ever. Alone we sat there staring at the giant sky

We started talking and like my dad always would, he asked me how I was doing with money, back then I made abut 6 to 7 dollars an hour so my checks never lasted, I told him I was OK and told him not to worry about me to which he took his wallet out and try to hand me his last 20 dollar bill, I swiftly rejected the offer and told him that he needed it more, and I honestly was hurting for money but as irresponsible as I was back then I would not take that money from him, if I couldn't help him I didn't want to take from him. To which he replayed "Before you would ask me for money to fill up your car, to buy food, and now you wont take my last $20?", "But dad I know that you don't have any money left and I don't want to take it from you" I said, "Please take it" he said as his eyes watered up and his voice which I barely recognized started to crack from emotion, I could tell that the fact that I wouldn't take his money hurt him, I once, not to long ago depended on him for gas and food, clothing and now I didn't want to take his money because he was broke, broke from all the medical expenses and medicine. There sat a broken man, knowing his time was near and he did the best he could to give what little he had to his last child. A child he loved so much he would do everything in his power to give him all he wanted and needed. I recall my mother telling me once, "When you were born you father forgot he had other children" So how could I do this to him? he loved giving me everything, He looked at me once again and said "Take it" so I did.

This was the last conversation I had with my father face to face, it went on for a bit, him talking to me about life and telling me how much he loved me, I would never see him again. But I remember him for who he was. About 8 months latter I was told that he had passed away, I felt so bad, I had so much I wanted to tell him but couldn't, he was gone and I never would forgive myself for not being there for him when he needed me most. About 2 months after his death I had a dream, I was sleeping and as always he would come and sit on the edge of my bead to stare at me and wait till I opened my eyes to greet me. He was back to normal, just how I remembered him, strong with a head full of hair, with his swagger back, no traces of Kimo, I hugged him so hard I began to cry... "I love you so much dad, I miss you like crazy, I am so sorry for not calling as much as I should, I need you" he told me it was OK, that he loved me and that he was alright, no more pain. I woke up crying like a baby, I knew that God had let me say good by to my Hero, my Superman, for one last time...... I will see him again but not yet, not yet.

In loving memory of my father
Jose Joaquin Roura


Sammy vs Goliath

This is a disclaimer:
Now I am not an animal beater but as I have learned my culture tends to discipline pets (dogs) by hitting them, nothing worth PETA's time but still that is the way we did it in Mexico and well we live here now so it has rubbed off. I love our 2 dogs to death, not as much as I love my wife but I do love them. I don't hit anymore but I thought it would be funny to tell this story but I wanted to explain my actions first. (Please don't judge me)

With that out the way lets Begin, It was a hot summer day in Orem Utah, the year was 2005 and I was having a hankering for DQ's blizzards that year, and so as I did almost every day I went and got a Cherry Chocolate Love blizzard, oh my, my mouth is watering as we speak. i got home and I plastered my sweet rear to the couch and turned the TV on to enjoy this amazing treat.

While I was getting acquainted with my treat my mother who I may add had not driven for about 25 to 30 years or more, was finally getting over her personal fears of driving. So she took my 2 nephews to scouts in my sisters Pathfinder. There I am shoving each spoon full of love in my...... wait let me reword that..... ah, I was eating my blizzard, how bout that? OK so I'm eating and all the sudden the door slams open, its my mother freaking out, I don't know whats going on but I try to get her to speak, she tells me she just crashed the car in to the neighbors yard so we race out side to check out the scene.

Lets rewind, as I was getting comfy on the couch, my madre (that's Spanish for mom, just for your gee whiz collection) was driving to scouts, now both of my nephews were sitting in the back and no one was on the passenger side, back then we lived in my aunt Martah's basement and her house is right on the corner, her neighbor across the street from us is a man by the name of Fillipo, he is one of the nicest people I have ever known. As my aunts house his house is also the corner house of the street, but his house has a white picket fence... yeah I kid you not.

My "madre" was making a right hand turn on the corner's stop, and as she was doing so the passenger door swung open, all this happen with in seconds. My nephew Danny yells at my madre "Bita (that's the kids name for their grandma, its a long story) the door is open!" keep in mind this is happening during my madres attempt to turn right on to the street, as she hears this she freaks out and reaches out to get the door behind her...... not realizing that the door that was open was the passenger door. Any experienced driver would know or react this way as well but the difference between them and my madre is that they would take their foot off the gas.

With her torso turned towards the back and the foot on the gas my madres attempt at saving her nephews life was stopped by a big menacing white picket fence, the car ran straight in to Fillipos front yard. I hope I made a good visual for you. Now again an experienced driver would have done things different, but my mom was not one yet. So she did what any Mexican woman would do, she put the car in reverse and got back on the horse, sort of. She told her self that if she didn't keep driving she would never do it again. She was in a similar car accident years back, but the target was a tree and not a perfect white picket fence.

She drove to drop the kids off, almost as a woman on a mission, badly wounded and gasping for the strength to finish that mission. Both of my nephews were scared and I'm sure wanting to break free of the grasp of my madre's determined will to finish her mission. She made it to church and back very slowly.

OK so back to were we left off, there I was staring at a 5 foot 4" woman, shaking in panic. I calmed her as best as I could, letting her know that this stuff happens to every one...... i had to tell her that. We walked outside to look at the damage and to talk to Fillipo as my madre neglected to let the fence owner know, "Well hello there, lovely day ain't it? oh by the way I just drove 2 tons worth of car in to your front yard, and the fence was in my way, sorry?" Now the car was OK, just a bent fender, and scratches all over the passenger door, that to be honest looked like a painting of the mountains.

I talk to Fillipo and apologize for what happened, and just like him to say "Is your mom OK? well that's all that matters to me. I'm sure this can be fixed." and that was that, we didn't involve our insurance as this might of made it go a bit higher, so I had to call around to find the cheapest fence service to repair the issue. This ended up costing my madre about 400 dollars. But she was just relieved that her mission was completed.

We walk back towards the house, by this time joking about what just transpired. So I can paint a picture of the next few seconds, I have to describe how the house was arranged. Since we lived in a basement apartment you walk in trough the kitchen, which is connected to a living room, the way it was laid out, the couch was against the wall and you would see it as soon as you walked in. The TV right in front of it against the other wall. Then the hallway would stretch, with 3 doors on your left hand side, the first is the laundry room which is always closed, then followed the bathroom, where our miniature schnauzer Sammy resided, and after that was my room. Right across my room was my madre's room which she shared with my sister (this being before she was married) and the last door in the small basement was my nephews room.

As we walk back home I start to remember my DQ Blizzard that awaited me inside, it was hot and the stress that we just went trough brought my sweet tooth back with a vengeance. started to salivate a bit and start dreaming of what was about to happen, when I walk in to my surprise I catch Sammy on top of the couch, his Heine legs stretched out and his other half on top of the TV dinner table we had (which was not a tv dinner table at all but a regular folding table with a plastic top and legs made out of steel), enjoying that delicious treat just as much or even more than I was a few minutes ago. As I realize what was unfolding in front of my eyes, Sammy looks up at us with a snout full of ice cream with a look of panic as if to say "Oh! I know what this looks like, but I assure you that it was like this when I got here, as a matter of fact it was Rocco (my aunts spotted chihuahua that resided upstairs) and I scared him away, so I figured I check out your Blizzard to make sure he didn't eat it all" I stare at him for what seemed like forever and yell out "Sammy!" I take off after him hellbent on beating him to a pulp, he saw the fire in my eyes and jumped off the couch and booked it towards the bathroom, his safe Haven.

I chased him inside and was able to get a kick on his rear but he eluded all of my other attempts, he jumped in the bathtub and as I closed in on him he jumped out, it was like he was fighting for his life being chased by Jaws himself. So off to the scene of the crime again, I chased him for a few seconds until I was able to corner him against the couch and the legs of the fake TV dinner table. It was like watching a Rocky movie in which I played the part of Apollo "The Master of Disaster," "The King of Sting," "The Count of Monte Fisto"Creed and he was Rocky "The Italian Stallion" Balboa. I put up my fist ready to bash his face in and so he proceed to put his paws up as to say "OK you don't believe me, fine lets do this!"

I throw my first devastating blow towards his snout and what does he do? like the pro boxer he is, he bobs his head to his right, my left and I hit the metal leg of the table bruising my hand in the process, I'm sure he was laughing inside and so was my madre, because as all of this unfolded she was still standing in the kitchen amused and horrified at the same time. To make a long story short I ended up wining the bout by knockout and had to throw my beloved blizzard away. That day I learned a lesson, never go toe to toe with a Miniature Schnauzer bent on staying alive.

So as time went on I never again left my Blizzards unsupervised and Sammy and I became best friends. Now my wife and I spoil the poo out of him, we went as far a buying him a wife.

The End.

P.s. I don't hit him anymore and I don't condone animal cruelty. Just thought I state that again. Sorry PETA, and sorry Sammy.

This is Sammy 3 years after that unforgettable bout.