People keep asking me how married life is. I guess my most honest answer has been, “Not really what I expected it to be.” Here’s what I’ve learned and how I’ve learned it:

1. Alone time doesn’t happen all that often. Jared and I were all cute on our honeymoon, showering together simply because we couldn’t stand to be away from each other long enough. Monday after our wedding, I wanted to go visit family or friends. He just wanted to stay in the apartment and be together. And I almost screamed when he climbed into the shower with me. I just wanted some time by myself, but that wasn’t in my stars for the day. But it’s really really okay. Because when you’re in love, even though you may want some time for just you, you’d be surprised at how well those moments where they invade your personal space end up going.

2. When you’re mad, don’t lie. They won’t leave you alone until you tell the truth. When I can’t stand being in bed with him one more second (and it does happen here or there, mostly when I’ve had a long day), and I go lay on the brown chair to just get some air, he’s out there in record breaking time, telling me to come back to bed, not willing to go until I get up and come to bed or tell him why I’m upset. And usually, the reason I don’t want to tell him is because it’s so dumb. And I come back to bed.

3. When you spend a lot of time together, you get on each other’s nerves. Moreso than when you were dating. All of a sudden, your business because “our” business, and you’re accountable for the things you do that didn’t matter before. All of a sudden, stealing the blankets becomes a crime punishable by death. All of a sudden, the dishes are piled up, you’re exhausted from working all day, and you just wonder why the other person couldn’t do it when they were sitting around all morning. There are no answers, and there are no arguments that will solve the problem. You do what you do, they do what they do, and you’re going to butt heads, but that’s part of life.

4. Eventually, finishing each other’s sentences gets really annoying. Let your loved one speak, otherwise, they’ll feel like they’ve lost their voice. And you’ll start getting the wrong endings. That’s just a bad experience all the way around.

5. You never run out of firsts. You might have to get a little creative with them, but as long as you have an imagination, you’ll never feel like an old married couple with nothing to look forward to together. There are always more firsts.

6. Sometimes, sleeping in the same bed is just plain annoying. You might find yourself stretching out when he’s in the bathroom or not home yet, and you will find yourself sighing with relief. Don’t let it get to you. It’s normal.

7. Praying together really does work. There are so many times that he come home angry or I come home upset, and we just pray together. All of a sudden we are just wrapped up together in spiritual closeness, and those problems don’t seem so big anymore. You can solve any problem by praying together. Bold? Yes. True? Also yes.

8. Sometimes, you just need to have a pillow fight. Having fun together is the best remedy for rekindling happiness in the marriage. Go on a date some time. Tickle each other. Dance in your living room. Cook breakfast together. Dating doesn’t end when you get married. In fact, it just goes up to a whole new level.

9. Enjoy each other. You know what I mean. Even when you’re upset with each other or you feel too tired. Don’t let time pass without making sure you share that time together.

10. No matter what, you just have to go for it. Do whatever it takes to be the best wife or husband. If you think it’ll make you a better person, do it. You will change when you’re married, but that’s the way it’s supposed to be. You can’t stay where you are and be devoted to someone else. There is change that happens when you give your whole life and heart to another human being.

And, really, that’s that.

I love being married.  It’s so great to find that one special person you want to annoy for the rest of your life.

~Rita Rudner


Chews Weisly

I was thinking about Disneyland today. I always think about Disneyland, really. I want so badly to go there with my husband. We’re still trying to work all that out. Anyway, that’s not the point of it.

I was thinking about all the random things that Disneyland holds that people always pass by. Like the garbage cans that say “waste please” and how they’re spaced apart the distance that it took Walt to eat a hot dog, and how there’s a real skull somewhere on the Pirates ride. Like how your feet kill when it’s time to go home, but you’re singing “Zippi-de-do-da” on your way out anyway. Like this sign on the Indiana Jones ride:

And I’ve often thought about the magnitude of such a statement. If you remember, in the movie, Indy has to choose which goblet he believes is the Holy Grail. If he chooses the wrong one, he will die.

And then, I don’t remember what he does. But I know he doesn’t die. He lived. And the Nazi died. Because that’s justice.

But he doesn’t die because whatever he chooses, he chooses wisely. I wonder what our lives would be like if we made every decision we make as if it is life or death, even when it isn’t. I think we would still make bad decisions. I think it’s inevitable to be dumb. But we wouldn’t have very many chances to make as many stupid little bad decisions, would we?

But I think that’s what agency is. It doesn’t mean we get to do whatever we want without fear of consequence. It means that we have the choice to do whatever we wish, and the real rewards come to those who choose wisely. I think there are too many people who don’t take responsibility for their choices because they are unhappy with the consequences. Like the young man that got kicked off of the BYU football team (or whatever) because he had chosen to break the rules. Most responses were that BYU’s rules were too rigid and he should be excused. However, be that as it may, the point is that he knew the rules, he knew the consequences, and he chose to break those rules anyway. So the right thing to do would be to stand up and take the consequences because those are what come to you based on the choices you make.

But it’s never that easy, really. Nothing ever is.

Do not pray for easy lives. Pray to be stronger men.


To live will be an awfully big adventure

Well, it’s officially been too long since I last updated this blog. It’s interesting how time gets away from you, especially when you don’t have the comfort of a computer in your own home. But, here I am, definitely updating the much needed information that I’m sure everyone wants to hear about.

Firstly, I am most definitely married. And it’s wonderful. Jared and I were so in love before we got married, and it has only grown since. I’m convinced that getting married is the best way to fall more deeply in love than you ever thought was possible.

We love to kiss. So what? We're married now, it's okay.

We started out our morning (well, I did anyway) bright and early. My dear and wonderfully talented friend, Shaylin Bell, did my hair and then came down to the Temple with us to meet with Jared’s wonderfully talented aunt, Becca Martin, and we had a crazy long photo shoot. 

When I first saw Jared that morning, I was completely breath taken. I couldn’t believe how totally dapper and handsome he seemed to me that day. Not that he isn’t always the most handsome man I know, but for some reason, that morning, he completely took my breath away and set my heart a flutter.

I always dreamt about my wedding day. Not the whole big reception deal, but the kneeling across the alter from the man that I loved, that I chose to be with forever and ever. But I can honestly tell you that it was nothing like the way I planned it. Our sealer was fabulous. He talked to us about how important it was to make time for each other and always love each other. He also stressed the importance of being obedient and following the commandments and keeping the covenants that we have made. It was pretty fantabulous, and exactly what we needed to hear. It was amazing to look around at all the people we loved (well, a lot of them any way) in that sealing room with us and then to look at each other and accept each other as husband and wife. It was the best kiss I have ever had, and I know that those kisses get better day by day and with every passing second as we grow and learn together.

Everyone was watching. How cute.

We had so many friends and family there that spent the whole day with us at our luncheon and also at the beautifully decorated reception (thanks to Marlene Jolley for being totally fantastic)

I don't know how we got this many people in the picture with all the other weddings going on. 41 the whole day!

The decorating was just how I wanted it!

We went to Phoenix for our honeymoon, courtesy of my amazing mother. We stayed at the Biltmore Hilton next to Biltmore Fashion Center, and it was the best hotel ever. We got gift cards to eat at their steakhouse, the Omaha steakhouse, from the front desk. I guess that’s what you get for walking into a hotel still dressed in your wedding dress (which was covered in burgundy frosting from our cake)

Best wedding cake, ever. Messiest, too.

We mostly just spent the next few days being together. It was so nice to cuddle and hold each other. The day after the wedding, though, we got pulled over because of all the writing on our front window. We were trying to find a gas station to wash it off, and since we didn’t know the area, it took us forever to find one and a cop pulled us over. He let us go with a warning, though as well as directions to the nearest Circle K. Nice guy.

We did get to go out to the Scottsdale train park, which was an adventure because we totally went the wrong way the first time and drove for an hour almost in the wrong direction. It was great, though. We talked a lot and saw a lot of really neat places. We were both excited to go home to our apartment. We walked in to all of our presents decorating our front room (because a couple of my siblings and bridesmaids took them all the way to the third floor for us), and enough random supplies to really get us started. My brother, Nephi, his wife, Trisha, and his daughter, Kelly stayed in our apartment while we were on our honeymoon, and they went grocery shopping for us. We had EVERYTHING we needed (and then some….) ready for us when we got home. It was such a wonderful and thoughtful blessing. They are so generous and thoughtful, and I love them to death. I really enjoyed visiting with them when the honeymoon was over. I couldn’t have picked better guests to apartment sit. We can’t even describe how much that has helped us out, especially because I got sick the week after the wedding and am just getting over it….

So, we celebrated my birthday by going to the Martin family Christmas party, which is always a good time. The program was hilarious, as usual, and the food was fantastic. While we were there, we got to meet the other newly wed couple, Jessica (Jared’s cousin) and Quentin. They are a fantastic couple, and it was great to welcome the new family member. They got married two days before us, so it felt like we were sharing wedding happiness, which was totally great. Turns out, he’s practically the best singer, ever, and the two of them entertained us with all of their many talents during the family program. There’s something extra special about Quentin:

He’s super tall! And a perfect fit to the family. When he walked into the kitchen, he said something like, “Wow, this isn’t white food.” My response was “What’s white food? Hot dogs?” He chuckled. I think he enjoyed the fine array of hispanic dishes that we had at our disposal as usual. Fantastic birthday!

Then came Christmas. We did so much that we were exhausted by the end of the day. We had our morning together, then we went to the in-laws to open presents with them. We followed that up by a huge dinner with my family. Once we were done there, we went to Grandma Lanette’s to do a cute game that Danny and Jill do with Jill’s dad every year. We had to answer questions to get our gifts. It was a lot of fun, a ton of laughs, and a great time.

New Year’s was spent at Danny and Jill’s new house that is absolutely lovely. We played games all night, lit off some small fireworks, and rang in the New Year with lots of excitement, happiness, and Catan. It was a wonderful holiday season.

A few days later, life started up again and it was off to school for Jared and off to work for me. Nothing really exciting happened until March 1st.  Dan and Jill are now proud parents of pretty much the cutest darn baby boy, ever.

Daniel Tyler Bienz

Daniel Tyler Bienz

He is absolutely adorable, and a fine new edition to an already wonderful family. We are so excited to welcome him to earth. Something Danny said hit me. This kid has unlimited potential. At this point, we don’t know anything about this bright new spirit, except that we totally love him more than he’ll ever be able to know and that we have a lot of responsibility to be an example to him and to teach him that he’s loved and that his potential is divine. I am so excited to be a part of this little boy’s life.

And, well, that’s life in a nut shell.

Eventually you can get into the nuts and bolts of reality: nurturing, caring, and getting along

Jody Watley