Thursday, February 13, 2014

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by

 the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did

So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. 

Catch the trade winds in your sails. 

Explore. Dream. Discover.

- H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

Thinking about my life, I already agree with this quote. I've been blessed to have been able to explore, see new places, and meet new people.  I do not want to fear what I do not know but rather take chances and be a little crazy. I want to keep up this adventurous life I've lived; even if it does kind of scare me sometimes. 

Sunday, January 12, 2014

My conversion story

Hello, all!

So, I know I'm not the most consistent blogger... I hardly write on this thing, 1. because I forget, and 2. because I wonder how many people will actually end up reading it anyway.  But today, I feel to post something that is very important to me, and that is my conversion story. As most of you probably know, I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I am a Mormon. Maybe some of you know that I was not always a member of this church. I was baptized when I was 17, about 6 years ago. A good family friend recently asked me to share the story of my conversion to the church with their family. Their daughter is on a mission for the Church in Japan, and she requested the stories of some friends so she could share them with the people she is teaching.

After sending this email off, I felt the desire to post it on here. I feel extremely grateful to have found the Church and to have had such great blessings. I would love if my story could help or touch one of you. So, here it is.   :)


As a young girl, I often went to the Catholic church with my mom. I liked going, because I wanted to get to know God better, but I always seemed to feel confused rather than uplifted after I left church. I felt like something was missing. Years passed and I continued going, but never seemed to have the relationship with God that I desired. Finally, when I was 15, I had the idea that maybe the reason I wasn't feeling that closeness I was looking for was because I was at the wrong church. So, with permission from my mom, I decided to attend other churches. 

For a year or so I went to various churches to see if I could find what I was searching for. I ended up finding a good Christian church which helped me to grow and learn a lot. I studied the Bible and went to great youth group and church camp activities. I really enjoyed the people at this church and did feel my testimony growing. After about a year, however, I began to feel like I wasn't progressing anymore. I felt like there were more things for me to learn but that I wasn't learning it at church. I started to wonder if maybe I was the problem; if I was doing something wrong which was preventing me from having the relationship with Heavenly Father that I wanted. At this point, I was almost 17 and about to start my senior year of high school. I had a friend, Elaine, whom I had known since I was about 13. We had always been very open and talked about everything from boys to school to family to religion. I shared my concerns with her and she listened with an open heart. She then invited me to attend church with her and her family to see how I felt there. Elaine's family are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I had heard about the LDS or the Mormons before; Elaine had shared some of her beliefs with me, and I had a couple other friends as well as a boyfriend that were members of the church. I knew them all to be very good, genuine people who were faith-filled and happy. But I didn't know very much about the church and was glad to go to church and learn more. 

From the first day I went to the LDS Church, I felt such peace and happiness! There I found answers to questions I had had for years. I found happy, wholesome families and people who were not perfect but were trying to be their best. I went to church for a few weeks and then started learning more from the missionaries. After a couple times meeting with them they invited me to be baptized. I had not initially planned to do so, but when they asked me I knew in my heart it was the right thing to do. It was the next step to continue following my Savior and being closer to him. On November 17, 2007 I was  baptized and my life has been blessed beyond measure ever since. I have finally been able to feel that closeness with my Heavenly Father that I was searching for for so long. I had the opportunity to serve a mission and share this message with others. I have met so many incredible people and have learned so much in the Church of Jesus Christ that has helped me to become a better and happier person! I am incredibly grateful for the church and for the beautiful life I have. I am SO HAPPY and I want everyone to have the same opportunities that I have been given!

I know my Heavenly Father lives, and that He loves me. I know he has a son, Jesus Christ, who died for my sins and for the sins of all the world. He has given us His gospel, so we may know how to live to become more like Him, to be truly happy, and to one day return to His presence. I know these things are true, and I say this in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.


Well, there it is! I truly love the Gospel of Jesus Christ and am so grateful for the purpose and direction and joy it gives me in life. If you have any questions or would like to learn more, please don't hesitate to ask me or go to or  Love you!  :)

Saturday, June 8, 2013

long time, no see!

well hello, everyone!!

in case you've completely forgotten about me, i'm danielle and i just got back (well, may 8th) from my mission in CHILE! trying to "sum it up" in a mere blog post would never do my mission justice... if you're really interested in knowing details about how it was, my emails from every week are posted on my mission blog (  but let's just say it was the hardest and most incredible, beautiful, wonderful experience of my life. my mission has completely changed who i am and my perspective on life. i am so grateful for the opportunity i had to serve as the Lord's missionary! but now i'm home so it's back to real life...

i'll be home for the summer, working, playing, etc. and will be going to BYU in provo in the fall.

well... yeah not so many exciting things to write right now, but just wanted to say "hello again" to my blog and my blogging friends. hi! i'm back!  :)


Saturday, October 29, 2011

called to serve

well, the time has finally come.
i've been wanting to serve a mission for three years.
and it all begins wednesday.
i am so grateful for this inredible opportunity. i hope to come back better than i am now and be able to say i served the Lord with all my heart, might, mind, and strength. i won't be blogging for the next 18 months, but i will be able to email home every week and my friend annie will be posting my weekly emails on my mission blog. that blog is
see you in 18 months.
adios! :)

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

the post you have all been waiting for

if you haven't completely forgotten. i KNOW, this is way past due. i've been home from my study abroad for more than a month. how have i not posted pictures yet?? i'm sorry!! i really have been super busy. BUT, without further ado, heeere are some of my favorite memories from my trip! better late than never, right?
istanbul, turkey. boat tour on the bosphorus river. one side of the river was europe, the other side was asia. istanbul was our first stop. after being on an airplane for a total of 17 hours, and getting close to NO sleep, we toured the city for the day. it was a rough day, to say the least! the second day we were even more tired than the first, if that's possible. but our spirits were lifted with this beautiful boat tour. fresh air and a private boat! fun fun.
hilary and i inside the "blue mosque" (sultanahmet mosque is its real name). we saw amazing mosques such as this and the famous hagia sophia. mosques everywhere and the call to prayer five times a day characterized istanbul.
i got to tie a couple knots in a real turkish rug! those rugs are beautiful. that rug will be 3x5 feet, and it will take about two years to complete.
the view from our hotel in istanbul was incredible! we spent every night up there enjoying it. our next stop was kusadasi, a port town in southern turkey. from there we went to ephesus, which was amazing!
view from our hotel room in kusadasi. not bad, eh? after spending a few days in kusadasi, we took a boat to the greek isle of patmos. yes, the same patmos where john was imprisoned and wrote the book of revelation in the bible!
this little girl was one of my favorite people on the trip! seriously. she is so funny and i just love her to pieces (our teacher's daughter). after spending the night in patmos, we took another boat to santorini, the holy grail of all greek islands. it was better than in the movies!!
our incredible pool at our hotel in santorini!
our obsession with gyros and the "fat kids club" begins. after a few fabulous days in santorini, it was off to athens for us.
parthenon, on the acropolis in athens.
now THIS was a sunset.
fat kids club in full swing.
church in athens!
gyros on our last day in greece. of course. now, we were off to ROME!! oh, i have always wanted to go to italy. it was everything i'd hoped it would be :)
doing laundry for the first time on the trip with my girls. happiest day everrr.
the colliseum was SWEET.
pizza navona- my favorite place in rome. <3
i was in LOVE with siena. notice the tuscan countryside in the background. beautiful. then, we went to florence.
leaning tower of pisa! it leans sooo far! i cannot believe that thing is still standing. we got to go in it and go up to the top. as soon as you walk in you can feel the ground completely leaning to the right! it was crazy.
this was my faaavorite restaurant. on the whole trip. i went twice the rigatoni was amazingg! if you ever go to florence, you must eat here.
we got to go to church in florence, too! after florence, we went to venice, the most confusing city in the entire world. with all the little canals and alleyways, it's next to impossible to navigate your way around that place. and i'm typically really good with directions. we ALL got lost.
we took a gondola ride :) had to. our last stop was switzerland!! we were supposed to go to egypt, but man am i glad we went to switzerland instead. there is no way hot sandy deserts could have compared with the mountainous beauty that was switzerland.
lake geneva.
the whole group, at the reformer's wall. at this really cool park in geneva.
we had a little too much fun on this thing. like the teacups at disneyland!
massive spider? after spending a night in bern, we were up to our final destination- lauterbrunnen!
we got to stop at the bern temple on our way there.
grindelwald. remember when i said switzerland was the most beautiful place in the world? no photoshop or color editing here.
schilthorn- breakfast in a rotating restaurant 10,000 feet in the swiss alps. yup, not bad.
the beautiful meadow we found whilst hiking said swiss alps.
our trail on the left. majesty all around. ahhh so beautiful. and the pictures don't even do it justice.
well, there you have it. the trip was THE BEST. it still feels like a dream. if i didn't have the pictures to prove it was real, i might believe it really WAS dream. experience of a lifetime- i'm so grateful i got to go!!! i will never forget it :)

Friday, July 8, 2011

sometimes i just smile and shake my head

because i am in complete disbelief at how amazing my life is.
it's ridiculous!!!
i just spent the past year in hawaii.
i'm about to travel the mediterranean for four weeks.
i'm serving a mission in chile for a year and a half.
not to mention i get to spend 10 days in provo staying with my best friend and visiting other good friends i haven't seen for awhile.
and besides all the amazing traveling, i have the most wonderful parents and friends i could ask for, two good jobs, and i'm a member of the church of jesus christ of latter-day saints!!! what could be better?
i feel so humbled and blessed at the opportunities that i have in my life. how did i get so fortunate?

life is amazing.
there will be much mediterranean blogging when i return.
aloha. :)

Monday, June 20, 2011

you can call me hermana.

i FINALLY have my mission call!!!!!
i have been called to serve in the
chile concepcion south mission
spanish speaking.
i leave november 2nd.

ahh. it is such a relief to know where i'm going. when i would think about my mission, i did not picture myself in chile, or south america at all. but ever since i opened that letter, i have felt so at peace. i know this is where the Lord wants me to be. i have wanted this for SO long. YAY!!!!!